It's all in the name: Funtastic back in Vernon for 35th year | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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It's all in the name: Funtastic back in Vernon for 35th year

Team costumes are always encouraged at Funtastic.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Funtastic
June 26, 2019 - 3:30 PM

VERNON - Organizers of Vernon's epic slow-pitch tournament don't need to come up with a tag line to describe their event. They say it all in the name.

"It's Funtastic," Vernon and District Funtastic Sports Society Board president Ryan McGiverin said.

What started off as a small slow-pitch tournament with about 20 teams is now celebrating its 35th year. Founded by John Topping in 1984 the event now sees 160 teams from all over B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan compete over the Canada Day weekend.

"It's a lot of fun, the baseball is not super competitive, it's basically a bunch of people that get together with a bunch of friends, (and) throw a slow-pitch team together," McGiverin said. "(Then) enjoy some adult beverages and watch some bands."

With 10 players per team, and each player generally bringing a plus one, the event pulls a sizeable crowd into the city.

Along with the 160 teams competing for slow-pitch fame, the events also attract up to 4,000 attendees for the nightly music concert.

Friday night sees well known Vernon band The Young’uns headline the stage with other local bands Redfish and the Shawn Lightfoot Band also performing. Saturday night is country night, with music coming courtesy of Washboard Union and Creedence Clearwater Revival cover band Bad Moon Riders. Two cover bands round off the musical entertainment on Sunday night with Hysteria of Def Leppard taking to the stage followed by the weekend finale from Simply Queen.

McGiverin said the money from the early days of the competition went to building the ball diamonds at the DND fields where the event is being held, and now all money raised is given back to various community organizations.

The event takes place at the DND Army Camp, with some slow-pitch games being held on Grahame Park at Fulton School.

While spots to play ball are all gone, tickets are still available for the nightly concerts. To purchase tickets and for more information go here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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