Swing Batter Batter Swing!

Last week more than 3,000 players, coaches and fans headed to Seattle, Washington for the Gay Softball World Series. (Click here to view pictures from this event.) The series, dubbed the "Northwest Quest," is the largest LGBT sporting event held annually.  It was a perfect opportunity for GLAAD's Sports Media program to do some outreach and help shine a light on LGBT athletes, coaches and fans.  It was also the first time GLAAD helped sponsor the tournament, and we provided media outreach assistance to the organizers and a free one-year membership to GLAAD for every athlete in attendance. Stories about Northwest Quest ran in various LGBT publications across the United States, and both LGBT and mainstream media outlets highlighted some of the wonderful stories of the athletes that participated.  Check out the Seattle Post-IntelligencerGaywired, Seattle Gay News, and the Southern Voice for more.   Despite a torrential downpour during the opening ceremonies (it is Seattle, after all), the rest of the week played out fairly well with mostly cloudy skies and cool weather.  Over the course of five days of competition, 175 teams from 41 different cities played games in eight divisions, with over 3,000 players, coaches and fans participating.  Throughout the week there were cheers, chants, skinned legs, iced shoulders, and above all, fun. By Saturday afternoon there were eight division winners.  Take a look at the winning teams and scores below:

Northwest Quest Series 2008

Championship game scores

Open A LA Vipers   32                     San Francisco D2  28
Open B Boston Café Crew   17         Long Beach Rough Riders 15
Open C Dallas Xplosion  13             Philadelphia Triple Play   11
Open D Seattle Atomic  7                Atlanta Muddogs 5
Women's A Seattle Vibe  12                  Long Beach Not Done Yet 2
Women's B Kansas City Pride   16          San Diego Urban Mo's  7
Women's C Seattle LunaChix  25            Atlanta Gamma  24
Women's D LA Nemesis  8                     Atlanta Gamma Lite      7
. In addition to the superb competition that took place, organizers managed to keep everyone busy at night as well, with parties, events, and excursions to Seattle Storm and Seattle Mariners games.  It was a great chance to meet organizers, athletes and fans in order to extend our support and provide them with information about GLAAD's Sports Media program. Hats off to the Host Committee for running the tournament so smoothly and for presenting a wide range of activities after the games were over. Next year, the series will be split between two host cities in Wisconsin. Milwaukee will host the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance (NAGAAA) tournament for men and Madison will host the Amateur Sports Alliance of North America (ASANA) tournament for women. Start planning now!