Coined as “the best weekend of the year,” the Travis Roy Wiffle Ball Tournament is underway at Little Fenway Park in Essex.
Travis Roy is a former hockey player who suffered a spinal cord injury just 11 seconds into the first game of his collegiate career. His foundation helps raise awareness and funds for other people in similar positions.
“This tournament is all about hope for those of us who are paralyzed. Hope comes from research, that’s what this is all about,” Travis Roy said Saturday.
The tournment began when Pat O’Connor thought his fields could be used for more than just a game of ball.
“I read Travis’s book called “11 Seconds'”about his accident and what he’s done to inspire so many people,” O’Connor said. “I realized we could do some real good with the fields, that’s how it started and Travis is the most inspirational person I’ve met.”
More than 30 teams from across the country are competing for a chance to take home the winning title.
Since the first year of the tournament, the community has raised more than $5 million to support research.
“It’s incredible, I mean every year how do you make it better? It’s the energy that comes, we have more people than ever, we’re raising more money than ever, they just announced 575 thousand dollars and the weekend’s not even over,” Roy said.
The tournament wraps up Sunday with a championship game.