Beep baseball gives visually impaired, blind children opportunity to play ball
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A modified version of America's pastime gives kids who are visually impaired or blind a chance to have fun and play ball.
"I hear you loud and clear!" said 18-year-old Javon Glass to the ball he affectionately calls "Mr. Beeper."
Glass is just one of over 50 kids who came out to play the game at the Kern Center at Milwaukee School of Engineering on Thursday.
"I love beeper baseball because I love all the sounds. Plus, it helps me when I'm in the outfield find the ball," Glass said.
"It's so much fun, and I feel like I'm included!"
The game uses balls and bases that beep to help the kids know where to swing and run.
"I feel like it’s a good opportunity for people who are disabled to be still able to play sports," 12-year-old Ava Sanderson said.
The annual event between Vision Forward Association and the MSOE baseball and softball team is about getting kids to play the game.
"As many of 70% of children who are blind or visually impaired do not participate in sports or even in sporting activities, or gym class, so it's really essential that we give them an opportunity to be active," CEO Vision Forward Association Jaclyn Borchardt said.
"Oftentimes, with any disability, the focus is what can't be done, and we really want to flip the page on this and talk about the things that can be done."
The game has been taking place since 2015, and Javon Glass has not missed an opportunity to come out swinging.
"The best part is hitting and running to my favorite base that makes my favorite sound," he said.
For his mother, Jantell Glass, seeing the joy the game brings her son and other kids who share his struggles is the best part of the event.
"The excitement that it brings him. He is always energetic, the first to run out and get or hit the ball," she said.
Vision Forward Association is an independent organization promoting personal development, career growth, and community awareness for visually impaired or blind people in our community. For more information on Vision Forward Association, visit vision-forward.org.