BY JESSE LOUDENBARGER
Friendly competition gets the ball rolling for active people looking to make new connections in the Bloomington Adult Sports Club’s (ASC) kickball league. Now in its second year, ASC has more than 200 people playing a childhood game that’s growing in popularity among the 21-and-over crowd.
“The beautiful thing with the game is that people have a commonality, something to talk about immediately,” explains co-founder Steve Casper, 28. “It’s a bad call. It’s a great play. That can spiral into a friendship, a relationship, or whatever you want that connection to be.”
Before coming to Bloomington, Casper studied in the sports medicine department at the University of Tennessee and worked as a chiropractor in Knoxville, Tennessee. “I came across the kickball group there, and it was a great way to meet like-minded people somewhere other than just a bar,” he says.
A Jasper, Indiana, native, Casper joined the practice at Bloomington Sports & Wellness in late 2013, where he met fellow kickball enthusiast, James Osborne, and the two started ASC based on the Knoxville model. “We have young entrepreneurs joining for networking purposes, as well as people needing a low-threshold way to get into fitness,” Casper says. “But for the majority it’s about meeting people.”
The cost is $62 to participate in seasonal leagues that currently run March–May, June–August, and August–October. People can join as individuals and be placed on an open team or they can form their own teams. Eleven people make up an on-field squad and most teams average 15 members.
“We mandate a balance between men and women,” Casper says. Every team must have at least five men and five women on their rosters, and there always must be at least four men and four women on the field.
Kickball leagues operate on Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons, with all games played at Olcott Park. Dodgeball leagues form in the fall for November–January and January–March seasons. Those locations have not yet been determined.
For more information, visit btownasc.com.