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Leadership Natchez hosting fundraiser, kickball tournament

NATCHEZ — Sometimes, the best way to address a problem is to start kicking.

Leadership Natchez will host a kickball tournament this weekend as a fundraiser for local charities and to bring the issue of recreation back to the front of the public mind, Leadership Natchez member Matthew Hall said.

Leadership Natchez is a year-long program operated under the umbrella of the Natchez-Adams County Chamber of Commerce, which is geared at developing and retaining leadership amongst professionals in the community. Members attend monthly classes, and each Leadership Natchez group has a community service project and a fundraising event.

The tournament will feature 10 teams of 12 players, and Hall said no more teams are being accepted.

However, anyone is welcome to attend, and the groups will have food, soft drinks and beer available, he said.

“We want to welcome anyone who just wants to come, watch and hang out,” he said.

The funds raised by the kickball tournament will be used to benefit the Natchez Stewpot and Pleasant Acre Day School, as well as Leadership Natchez’s 2013 scholarship program.

The Stewpot offers free, hot meals to anyone who needs food. Pleasant Acre Day School is a learning center for adults with special needs.

“On one of our days, we got to do a tour of the Stewpot and Pleasant Acre, and we decided after that day we would help them out — we could see that the Stewpot needed some new equipment,” Hall said.

“Pleasant Acre Day School had a bead drive a few months ago, and we donated some beads for them to resell, and they are also trying to send their students to Biloxi for an event, so we are going to help them send their students to that event.”

The reason Leadership Natchez decided to have a kickball tournament is because it will bring attention to the issue of recreation, Hall said.

The push for a non-binding referendum for unified city-county recreation complex had its origins in a former Leadership Natchez class, Hall said.

“We wanted to see if we could make a push for recreation and get people interested in it again, but this is all for a good cause,” he said.

The tournament will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Duncan Park.