It's the bottom of the ninth as far as preparations go for the Dizzy Dean 8-year-old Invitational Tournament, which is coming to Rossville Friday, July 5.
Local teams will compete in the tournament alongside teams from Cherokee, Canton, Bartow, Jackson and Jefferson counties.
The tournament begins at 6 p.m. with two games at the ball park in Rossville at 200 Ellis Road. Play continues the next day beginning at 9 a.m.; games will be played all day Saturday and Sunday before the tournament wraps up Monday or Tuesday, depending on weather conditions.
"We will have 25 to 30 teams participating from across the state of Georgia," said Rossville Recreation Director/Dizzy Dean Georgia State Director Carthell Rogers. "We bid on the tournament and won the bid. We should have approximately 420 baseball players and probably 175 coaches and 840 parents plus siblings, so at least 1,435 people are expected to attend."
Another kind of ball game
Former Harlem Globetrotters and their professional athlete friends - Michael Douglas, Tyrone "Hollywood" Brown, Larry "Shorty" Coleman, Antoine Scott, Robert Wallace, Tree Gordon, Mike Glenn, Jimmy Bolden, Kevin Sowell, L.T. Trahan and Kevin Sanford - called the Harlem Legends, are set to play on the basketball court at Rossville Athletic Complex Friday, July 26 at 7 p.m. The professional basketball players will take on local celebrities including Walker County Sheriff Steve Wilson, Rossville Mayor Teddy Harris and former Rossville High School standouts like David "Lorenzo" Harris.
The event is the culmination of University of Tennessee at Chattanooga basketball Hall of Famer Regina Kirk's All-Star Basketball Camp, which runs Monday-Friday, July 22-26 at the complex.
"The Harlem Globetrotters were here a few weeks ago visiting kids in the school for demonstrations," said Rogers. "The kids in the school loved it. The Harlem Globetrotters are coming in to help with a fundraiser for the Regina Kirk Foundation. She helps underprivileged kids."
According to the foundation's website, the mission of the foundation is "to impact young women with the focus being on life values, athletics and education. It will build honor character integrity and faith which will reflect their worth and value. It is a positive program to prevent teen pregnancy, school dropout rate, gangs and low self-esteem."
Admission to the Harlem Legends Celebrity Basketball Show is $10 in advance or $13 at the door. VIP seats are $25.
To learn more, visit harlemlegends.com or reginakirkfoundation.org. Tickets can be purchased from Kirk by calling 423-320-8699.