ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — The annual Baseball For All Tournament kicked off in Rockford this weekend.
The tournament brought hundreds of female baseball players, and some famous faces to the forest city.
The tournament had 31 baseball teams with over 350 girls that were ages 7 to 18. These girls had goals to follow the famous Peaches’ footsteps.
Alexandra Acre is a first baseman and pitcher, she plays on the team The Mighty Peaches named after The Rockford Peaches.
Acre’s baseball goals are “to be just like [The Rockford Peaches] and to follow in their steps and to follow our dreams.”
Acre has grown up not only playing baseball, but watching her father play on the professional baseball team in Oakland.
Mark Acre coaches his daughter’s baseball team, and he said that having his daughter’s team come to Rockford means so much for their development as athletes.
“We’re the Arizona peaches named after the Rockford Peaches so a lot of us knew the history,” Mark Acre said. “We’ve seen the movie, obviously the edited version of the movie, so it was good for them to come here and know the history of it in advance and how important it is for girls to play baseball.”
Justine Siegal, the founder of Baseball For All explained why Rockford is the best place for the tournament.
“Well Rockford is a wonderful town and you have historic Beyer stadium where the original Peaches played, and it’s also going to be the home of the International Women’s baseball center. So for us Rockford is a very historical place and we’re excited to come back,” Siegal said.
For actress Megan Cavanagh who played Marla Hooch in A League of Their Own, and former Peoria Redwings Player Maybelle Blair one of their favorite things to do is to enjoy the food at the stadium.
“Well Beyer stadium is an awesome thing to go see. I’ve been taken to, I’ve eaten in great places here but I don’t know the names of them but I’ve been to some great food places,” Cavanagh said.
Blair explained how she “went the other night to one of your famous Italian restaurants. I don’t know the name of it. But we had more fun there and the food was absolutely magnificent. Was it Lino’s? That’s it! It was very good.”
It’s not all about competition for the girls when in Rockford. They also had some fun at local attractions, like Volcano Falls located at 7602 Rock Valley Pkwy in Loves Park.