Pass the Cash: Miracle League

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A new season of baseball for the Grand Strand Miracle League is about to get underway in Myrtle Beach.

The charity provides an opportunity for kids with disabilities to enjoy playing ball.

The Miracle League receives only a few small grants and relies mostly on generous donations from the community.

So WMBF News Anchor Paula Caruso is passing the cash to help get the new season in full swing.

People say the game of baseball is as American as apple pie, but for kids who are born with a disability, it can mean a lifetime of sitting on the sidelines.

Tory Mackey, Grand Strand Miracle League Executive Director understands the importance of the league and what it can mean to the children involved.

"These children, many times they're isolated, they don't have many options of different sports to play," Mackey explains.

Ten years ago a major change came for kids in the Carolinas when the Grand Strand Miracle League held it's inaugural season.

"The players absolutely live to play baseball! I've heard parents tell me they sleep in their uniforms the night before!" Mackey says with excitement. "This is a familiar spot, a place that feels like home for them."

It wouldn't be home without their family around, and they come out in full force to support the players year after year.

Mackey explains, "It provides a support network. I think the parents that are gathered here all have a very special common bond and that is doing their very best to give their child with special needs a wonderful and meaningful life."

The field is as unique as the players themselves.

The smooth surface allows kids in wheelchairs and walkers to get into the game and give it all they got!

"Those faces light right up, you realize how just a little thing can really make someone's day and their excitement is just unbridled. They're not trying to be cool, they just put it all out there for you and it's fun to watch," added Mackey.

It's fun for all, but for some of the players, it's also serious play.

"We've got a group of kids that have progressed in their abilities, so much so, we have a team that goes to Special Olympics every year and last year won a bronze medal," confirms Mackey.

The bronze medal is an honor that wouldn't have been possible without the support of a community.

"I'm also continually overwhelmed by how folks just come out of the woodwork to show support and love to these kids. We've been really blessed in that way," Mackey says thankfully.

A blessing the Grand Strand Miracle League is hoping to share.

Mackey says one game can make the difference. "Come on out to a game. Come out and come cheer for these kids. It will definitely make your day."

Opening day for the Miracle League is March 26, and you can visit their website for a complete schedule. They are celebrating their 10 year anniversary this season and Mackey says they have a lot of special events planned.

Copyright 2011 WMBF News. All rights reserved.