Fifteenth Bi-Annual Kickball Tournament – Fall 2016
The fall 2016 15th Bi-Annual Tournament of Hope Kickball Event kicked off this year in honor of Cheryl Anderson, one of the original founders of the event, and an icon in the local behavioral health community. We lost Cheryl this past July but her memory lives on in the hearts and minds of our community and all who participated in this year’s Tournament. As always, all the games were action packed, fun-loving and hotly contested!
The Tournament was started by Marc Community Resources, Jewish Family and Children’s Services and Partners in Recovery and began with just four teams and a hundred participants. It has grown to eleven teams and over three hundred in attendance. The Master of Ceremonies was Angelo Edge, COO of Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care. Angelo welcomed the participants and reminded them that while the games are competitive, the goal of the day is to have fun, renew friendships and make new ones.
As with past tournaments, teams from all over the Valley’s behavioral health landscape came together on November 18, 2016, at Kiwanis Park in Tempe for a wonderful day of competition and camaraderie. This year we had two new participants joining in the fun, Hope Lives and Community Bridges. And wouldn’t you just know it, one of our newcomers, Hope Lives, took first place!
The entire day was truly awesome as we all witnessed each team put forth their very best effort while demonstrating teamwork, resilience and positive attitudes, whether victorious or not. Recovery and resilience were definitely the guiding themes of the day. In that same spirit, whether a game was won or lost, an atmosphere of community and togetherness remained the focal point. It was precisely this wide-spread aura of fair play and good sportsmanship that made every single participant a true winner in every sense of the word!
After a series of hard fought close games, Partners In Recovery and The Recovery Empowerment Network took home the 2nd and 3rd place trophies, respectively. The following list of highly talented competitors won spirit participation awards after demonstrating exceptional teamwork and endurance:
- Marc Community Resources
- Jewish Family and Children’s Services
- Community Bridges
- RI International
In all of the closely contested games, each and every player showed grit and determination while displaying exceptional sportsmanship. Such a display of comraderies and teamwork truly made The Maricopa Health and Wellness Association proud to be the event’s key event organizer.
Mercy Maricopa Integrated Health provided a tasty and nutritious meal prepared by STARR staff and participants. During the meal, new friendships were made, and old friends got a chance to catch up on old times. Matt Kennedy from REN entertained us all with his amazing collection of electrifying music. We also got a chance to celebrate Ted William’s birthday which has become a November tradition.
Throughout the tournament, each team had many individual players who skillfully contributed to their teams’ success with their dedicated and determined play. This fall’s event and all the past tournaments are living proof of the power of recovery and resilience in action. Moreover, each participant represents the living evidence that recovery and resilience is ALWAYS possible!!
What a wonderful investment in the resiliency accounts of so many wonderful people!! Bring on the spring 2017 Tournament so we can continue to shine a bright light on the beauty and brilliance of our awesome recovery community!