Gardner-Webb to Hold 20th Annual Beep Ball Game

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Boiling Springs, N.C. – The Noel Program at Gardner-Webb University will host the 20th annual Beep Ball game on Friday, Oct. 28 at 6 p.m. at the John Henry Moss Baseball Stadium, in conjunction with other Homecoming events.

Gardner-Webb and the Boiling Springs community are invited to enjoy a different kind of softball, one that raises awareness about the challenges that face blind and vision-impaired individuals.  Sighted players must wear blindfolds while trying to hit a beeping ball, run to beeping bases, and decipher instructions shouted to them by sighted spotters.

“I’ve been doing this for four years with Gardner-Webb. I had heard about it but I had never done it before. It’s a good opportunity—an adaptive way—for people who want the chance to be able to play sports,” says senior Travis Sherrill.

Every year, a student team competes against faculty for the Beep Ball trophy. This offers visually impaired students a great opportunity to participate in athletics and gives others a window into the life of those who cannot see. “It is wonderful how everybody cheers for everybody else.  At that moment we are sharing an intimate world. You get very close to those around you when you’re in the dark, ” says English Professor Dr. Matt Theado.

Fans who come out to John Henry Moss Baseball Stadium will receive a free raffle ticket that could give them the chance to play an inning of Beep Ball. The game is free of charge and open to the public. The community is encouraged to attend other Homecoming activities as well, starting with the GWU Volleyball contest at 7 p.m. in the Lutz-Yelton Convocation Center, just after Beep Ball concludes.

For information about Homecoming events or the Beep Ball game, call the Noel Program at (704) 406-4270.

According to visionsvcb.org, the average number of years of education for blind adults is 11.4.  Many (40 percent) did not obtain a high school diploma, 32 percent are high school graduates, 16 percent have some college education, and 12 percent are college graduates.

The Noel Program seeks to provide assistance for deaf, blind, learning disabled, and other students with documented disabilities by offering accommodations and services such as readers, mentors, note-takers and many others.  There are around 140 students in the Noel Program at Gardner-Webb, about 10% of the entire student population.  For more information, call 704-406-4270 or visit gardner-webb.edu.

Click here for a Beep Ball testimonial from English Professor Dr. Matt Theado