BREAKING
Live updates: Confirmed coronavirus cases in Georgia now 2,809, with 33 in Forsyth
The Georgia Department of Public Heath is reporting numbers of coronavirus cases by county in the state. It is updated twice daily at noon and 7 p.m.
Full Story
By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great local journalism.
Cumming-Forsyth County Miracle League marks 10 years Saturday
Miracle
Cumming-Forsyth County Miracle League will celebrate its 10th anniversary and kick off the 2016 spring season Saturday morning at Coal Mountain Park. The league is a specialized form of softball played by youth and adults with special needs ranging in age from about 4 to 40 years old. Organizers credit the leagues success to strong community and volunteer support. - photo by Micah Green

NORTH FORSYTH — A local athletic league for children and adults with special needs will celebrate its 10th anniversary and kick off the 2016 spring season Saturday morning at Coal Mountain Park.

Jerry Dupree, president of the board of directors for the Cumming-Forsyth County Miracle League, said he is pleasantly surprised at its longevity.

“If you had told me eight years ago that we’d be celebrating 10 years and have just as many people still supporting this thing and the community continuing to wrap their arms around this thing, I’d have been glad but surprised,” Dupree said.

Miracle League is a specialized form of softball played by youth and adults with special needs. Players range from about 4 or 5 years old to those in their 30s and 40s.

During games, every player plays, hits, scores and wins. Those needing help with certain parts of the game are assigned a “buddy.”

According to Dupree, the demand to volunteer as a buddy is so great that positions are typically filled two months before the season starts.

All league games are played at Coal Mountain Park, the only facility in the county with a special rubber field.

Players keep returning year after year, which Dupree said makes the anniversary more special.

“It’s a heartwarming thing, from a personal perspective, because when you have kids come up and put their arms around you and they were 4 or 5 when they started,” he said. “Now they’re taller than you are and say, ‘Some of my best memories were here at this field.’ It just pays the debt for everything.

“We’ve watched these children go from, again, 4 or 5 years old to now having learner’s licenses, some of them, and driver’s license and growing into young adults and having a job and finishing high school.”

The league has since spread to other sports, including wheelchair football and basketball and a bowling league.

Saturday’s event will also feature a short ceremony for some of those who have helped support the program.

“We just wanted to have a low-key celebration of saying ‘thank you’ [and] look what that effort has provided for 10 consistent years for those kids and their families and them getting to know one another and people with similar situations bonding and other leagues starting as a result,” Dupree said.

Coal Mountain Park is at 3560 Settingdown Road. More information can be found at http://www.miracleleaguecfc.com/.