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Pick-up slowpitch softball comes to Carthage

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WEST CARTHAGE — Grab your bat, mitt and best baseball hat and head to Donald F. Getman Memorial Park for Sunday softball pick-up games.

A group of slowpitch softball-lovers spearheaded by Shane Douglas and Lee Bach intend to play every Sunday at 6 p.m. on Little league field No. 3.

“This is for families,” said Bach. “It’s for bringing something to Carthage, because there’s nothing; really nothing for adults.”

The group first met June 22 with five in attendance. The day was planned more as an informational meeting. A total of 19 people participated the second week, June 29, resulting in two games. Games are played to seven innings and are co-ed. There are no umpires and strikes will be counted when the ball hits the plate.

“We want to make it more fun,” said Douglas, who got the ball rolling. “I got asked back on a team and my wife saw how happy I got. She said ‘hey, how about this?’ Then we got with [the Bachs] and [Lee] jumped like crazy.”

“It’s not for kids, per se. Maybe 17-year-olds and older; it’s more for adults and teenagers,” said Kate Douglas, adding that children would be able to play at the park if they did not want to watch.

“I think they’re hoping that if they play pick-up this summer, then maybe by next summer they can get a Carthage League going,” she said.

Ideally, games would be played with about 20 players, although if they get an influx of participants there are two other fields to play on. In the event of smaller groups, there will be practices of mini games.

Interested participants are encouraged to bring their own bat and gloves if they have them. The Douglas family has a few to spare. There is no charge to participate.

Locally, there are three softball leagues that men can participate in, although they are all fastpitch and, according to Bach and Douglas, at least one of them has a long waiting list. Those leagues play in Watertown, Croghan and Harrisville. There was a league playing in Carthage, but Bach speculated it had been at least 10 years since that was organized. Michele Bach recalled a women’s league playing when she was a girl, but was unsure when they had stopped meeting.

“It’s a chance to interact people. To meet new people,” said Douglas. “Also, we hope if we get enough adults on these fields there’ll be more of an interest in fixing it up. Because even if they’re fixing it up for themselves, they’re also fixing ‘em up for the kids.”

Games are played Sunday evenings at 6 p.m. Anyone interested in learning more about the group may visit Carthage Slow Pitch Softball on Facebook.

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