Eighth Annual Olds Slo-Pitch Tournament Finds Success Despite Weather Delays

Eighth Annual Olds slo-pitch tournament finds success despite weather delays


After striking out earlier this summer due to the torrential downpours that plagued Alberta for weeks on end, the 8th annual Olds slo-pitch tournament hit a home run with athletes and fans alike this weekend.

“We usually get together once a year, typically in July, but the weather was not cooperating so this year it was in August,” said Darren Brown, head coach of the softball program in Olds.

Typically the slo-pitch tournament draws about eight teams from across Alberta, including Lacombe, Camrose, Edmonton, Olds, and Airdrie; however, this year only Airdrie and Olds were able to take part in the tournament, again, due to the delayed scheduling brought on by the record amount of rain Alberta received this summer.

But despite the short notice and delays, Brown said he was able to get four teams together from both Airdrie and Olds, and complete in two games and a skills competition. On the field athletes big and small, young and old, each took to the field and pitch for a day of friendly softball competition followed by an evening dinner and dance.

Devyn Renzetti, a multi-sport athlete who has been a member of the Olds and District program for more than two years, said tournaments like this are a great way to meet new friends and get a workout in at the same time.

“Growing up I was home schooled, so I never got to go to a real school and experience a real sport, so I found Special Olympics,” he said. “Everybody and all the coaches here, everyone with Special Olympics, they take their time and they help raise money and everything. It’s a good community for everybody to try out.”

“I’ve been trying to find ways to keep myself busy in life, and doing sports and Special Olympics events is pretty good for my life right now.”

Brown echoed Renzetti’s sentiments and said Special Olympics has really had a tremendous impact on his life. Over his nine-year tenure with the organization, he said he has met a ton of great people and made a number of new friends.

“The athletes are so friendly,” he said. “I’ve never had so many hugs before. It’s a really good opportunity to come out and volunteer and have lots of fun.”

Due to the scheduling delays and subsequent lower participation numbers, this year’s tournament was not a provincial qualifier, but rather a friendly competition put on for the thrill of the sport.

To learn more about the 2017 Special Olympics Summer Games in Medicine Hat, be sure to visit our website. You can also find an event near you by visiting our community calendar.

For more photos from Saturday’s slo-pitch tournament, visit our Facebook and/or Flickr page.