By Francis Scarcella
The Daily Item
SUNBURY — A recent fundraising idea in Danville kick-started a city intern to propose the first Sunbury kickball tournament, and some “so-called” Valley celebrities will battle it out on Saturday to generate money to secure the popular annual Sunbury fireworks display.
If the thought of seeing the “celebrities” kick a ball isn’t enough to drag you to the John Long Field at the Persing Recreation Complex for the Light Up the Sky Kickball Tournament, then we’ve got even more of a hook for you.
Northumberland County Commissioner Vinny Clausi is the head coach of the Sunbury Celebrities.
Still not hooked?
Snyder County Commissioner Peggy Chamberlain Roup will do live commentary during the five-inning games, which begin at 9 a.m. More than 10 teams will participate.
And if that isn’t enough, then performances by Jay-Z and Beyonce during the “fourth-inning stretch” should seal the deal.
OK, Jay-Z and Beyonce won’t be making an appearance, but thanks to a slew of Valley residents who are donating their time to raise money for the Sunbury Celebration fireworks show, which costs $18,000, it may just end up being a better time.
The event will begin with the Sunbury Celebrities facing the Max Media’s Y-106.5 Misfits, led by star player and radio personality Chad Evans.
T.J. Hertzog, 22, who works for the city as an intern from Susquehanna University, participated in May’s “Kickin’ it for Kids” kickball tournament, which was put together by two Geisinger Health System nurses to raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network.
“I played in it and thought it was a great idea,” Hertzog said. “This should be a lot of fun.”
So if you miss the days of playing a sport in gym class that wasn’t really a sport, but now is a sport, then Saturday could be your chance.
Kickball is played like softball, only the pitcher rolls a large, bouncy ball toward a kicker, rather than a batter. When the ball is kicked into play, fielders may use it to bean base runners to get an out.
“I’m excited for this,” Roup said. “I can hardly wait.”
She will be a guest umpire, and she said she’s got a message for head coach Clausi.
“I’ll be watching every move he makes,” she said. “I’ll keep a close eye on him.”
Clausi fired back.
“She can watch all she wants,” he said. “I’ll fire her.”
Chamberlain also had a message for Sunbury Celebrity player Mayor David Persing.
“I can be persuaded,” she said. “I’m just saying, I am a Sunbury girl.”
Chamberlain had better watch what she is doing because the team of Brads, as in Brad Slack and Brad Hare, of the Sunbury Police Department, also will participate as will fellow officer Travis Bremigen.
State Rep. Lynda Schlegel Culver, Northumberland Mayor Len Zboray and Sunbury City Council members Jim Eister and Todd Snyder also will be on the Sunbury team.
Drew Kelly, of Sunbury Broadcasting, and Nikki Krize, of WNEP Newswatch 16, will be on the field waiting to battle the Y-106 group.