For the third straight year, six of the top local high school baseball teams in the northwest Georgia area will put their talents on display at Chattanooga's AT&T Field - home of the Chattanooga Lookouts - for the annual Catoosa County Children's Fund Baseball Classic.
A tripleheader of games on Saturday, March 3 will include LFO against longtime rival Ridgeland, starting at 11 a.m. Ringgold will take on Northwest Whitfield at 1:30 p.m. and Heritage will face off with Gordon Lee at 4. All six teams played in the event a year ago.
The Catoosa County Children's Fund provides students and families in the county with short-term needs such as food, clothing, shelter, dental and medical care, educational related supplies or fees, or short-term emergency needs in an effort to develop their physical, mental, and emotional health and welfare.
"We've had great success the first two years," said Dr. Lamar Brown, the Director of Student Services for Catoosa County. "We have three great games and it should be a great money-making day for a great cause.
Brown said the event raised over $13,000 last year.
There will be three different silent auctions taking place during each game featuring merchandise from local businesses plus sports memorabilia. Money will also be raised from advertising sales for the event program.
"We appreciate all of our sponsors too," Brown added.
"It's a great organization to be involved with," said Lookouts Vice President Andrew Zito, who attended Wednesday morning's press conference in Ringgold. "Lamar Brown and his team do a great job raising money for the Children's Fund and the games really kick off our season at AT&T Field.
"We get to have state-ranked teams come up and play baseball at AT&T Field and when they are there, it really tells me that baseball season is here. It's great high school baseball for a great cause and it's also great to work with the Catoosa County Sheriff's Department and all the volunteers that help during the day."
Gordon Lee is currently ranked No. 2 in Class 1A (Public School Division). Ringgold is No. 2 in Class 3A, while Heritage is No. 2 in Class 4A.
"It's great baseball and we've had a great relationship with the Lookouts," Brown added. "The state championships in Georgia are now played in minor league parks, so this is an opportunity for the players get to play in that type of environment and on that type of field."
Gates will open at 10 a.m. and tickets are $5 each.
New to this year's event will be a cornhole tournament, which will also take place at AT&T Field. Entry fee for the singles tournament will be $20 and $30 for the doubles tournament through March 1. Both fees also include admission to the Baseball Classic.
The doubles tournament ($200 team prize) will begin at 12 noon, while the singles tournament ($100 team prize) starts at 3.
For more information on the tournaments, contact Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Chris Lusk (email@example.com).