Flint, MI– Who do you think would win in a game of softball?
The Flint Police Department or the Fire Department? The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office or the Michigan State Police?
This question isn’t hypothetical. On Saturday, Sept. 4, these public safety officers will be playing against each other at a community event in Hasselbring Park as part of the senior center’s Illuminating Community Change safety project.
The idea for the event came out of a brainstorm between Beverly Lewis, the executive director of Hasselbring Senior Center; Bonnie Grass, the president of Friends of Hasselbring; and Linda Bell, the founder of the education program Ring a Bell for ASL.
While the center has hosted softball games before, this is the first time these public safety organizations are playing.
“I got an immediate positive reaction from all of the groups, and they thought, ‘This is a community fun day, so that would be great to be a part of,’” Lewis said.
It’s also going to be an “intergenerational” day of fun. Before the police play their games, the Bassett Park Ballers and Hasslebring Heavy Hitters, two senior teams, will play with the option of having children run in their place.
All of the teams will be cheered on by senior cheerleaders from the Hasselbring Senior Center who have been practicing for the big day.
In addition to the softball games, Lewis said there will be other entertainment including a game truck, a bounce house, face painting, and music. Attendees can also get the COVID-19 vaccine, school supplies, and enter the free raffles to win gift cards and bicycles.
“Community safety is a huge goal for both Bonnie and myself with the work that we’re doing,” said Lewis.
The event is sponsored by the Valley Area Agency on Aging, the Neighborhood Engagement Hub, Ring a Bell for ASL, and Keep Genesee County Beautiful.
The first softball game starts at 9 a.m., and the event will continue through 5 p.m. at 1002 W. Home Ave. Lewis urges all attendees to bring their own chairs, umbrellas and tents to this free event. Vendors wishing to provide free fliers and resources to attendees are welcome to attend if they bring their own table and chairs.