Alpha Tau Omega will host a two day co-ed Softball Tournament Friday, April 5 and Saturday, April 6 at the Buffalo Sports Complex to raise funds for Ronald McDonald’s House Charities of Amarillo.
“Every fraternity picks a non-profit organization and throughout the year, they raise funds to help that organization,” ATO Vice President Cedric Nguimatsa said. “Our inspiration was the kids and their families. The RMHC receives no funds from the government and little to no support from the surrounding businesses of Amarillo.”
The fraternity has raised funds for the RMHC prior to this year, but they haven’t always used softball.
“We used to host a corn-hole tournament during the homecoming football game, but after the new sports complex was built, we saw the opportunity to create the softball tournament,” Nguimatsa said.
The idea for a softball tournament came from some ATO’s members.
“A couple of guys’ parents play in a couple of softball leagues, so it gave us the idea to throw a softball tournament and see if it would be a good fundraiser. It turned out great,” ATO member Juan Martinez said.
Their second annual softball tournament begins Friday evening.
“At 6 p.m. there will be the opening ceremony with the first pitch by the RMHC kids and the nation anthem by Delta Zeta member Lindsey Davis, and the games start at 7 p. m.,” Nguimatsa said. “Every team will play one game on [Friday], and on [Saturday] games start at 9 a.m.”
The tournament will follow a double elimination format and will use the USSSA softball rules as Nguimatsa explained.
“They are the most well-known slow pitch rules,” Nguimatsa said. “We use them because we have teams from all over the panhandle.”
The tournament may have teams from a big area, but ATO won’t participate in the games.
“The fraternity itself will not have a team because we devote all our time to making sure the events runs smoothly and all the participants have a memorable time,” Nguimatsa said.
Players aren’t the only ones who are allowed to participate in the tournament.
“Anyone can help us by donating food and drinks for our concession stand as well as becoming a sponsor,” Martinez said. “Your name or the name of your business or company will be on the back of our shirts which will be sold throughout the tournament.”
Nevertheless Nguimatsa has some tips for those playing in the games.
“The main tips I have for playing in the tournament is to come and be ready to have fun,” he said. “Do not take it too seriously because we are all here for the Ronald McDonald House Charities, and this tournament is to raise money to help them.”