MindsEye Announces the Inaugural Beep Baseball “Battle for Illinois” 

The state’s two nationally competitive teams go head-to-head on August 27th, 2022 for the “Illinois Secretary of State” BeepBall trophy

Belleville, IL – MindsEye’s nationally competing Beep Baseball team, the Gateway Archers, will soon bring the first-ever Beep Baseball event to Springfield, IL. On August 27, 2022, they take on the Chicago Comets in two exhibition games at the University of Illinois Springfield Rec Park field located at 2100 Vachel Lindsay Dr. Springfield, IL 62703. Thanks to a generous donation to MindsEye, Ameren Illinois will act as the presenting sponsor for this “Battle for Illinois.” The winning team will hold the “Illinois Secretary of State” BeepBall trophy for the coming year. The award honors the office of the Illinois Secretary of State and recognizes its ongoing exemplary commitment to accessibility and services for Illinois residents who are blind or have low vision.

Beep Baseball, or “BeepBall,” is an adaptive form of baseball that allows athletes of all visual abilities to play together. All Beepball players are blindfolded, except for the sighted pitcher and outfield spotters. Players are guided by sound– the beeping ball, buzzing bases, and cues from the pitcher. The Gateway Archers and Chicago Comets are affiliates of the National Beep Baseball Association or NBBA.  

The day begins at 11am, when interested community members (at any vision level) can put on a blindfold and try their hand at batting and fielding alongside the Gateway Archers! The first game of the Archers/Comets doubleheader will begin at 1 pm and determine the winner of the “Illinois Secretary of State” trophy. In the second game at 3 pm, specific rules will be adjusted to test recently proposed NBBA changes. Both games will be fully Audio Described by MindsEye.

The Belleville, IL, based nonprofit MindsEye has served the St. Louis Metro area for nearly 50 years through various programs that support individuals who are blind or have low vision. In October 2021, MindsEye expanded its geographical reach, taking over the Springfield, IL Radio Information Service (RIS) broadcast at the request of, and with grant funding from, the Illinois State Library. According to MindsEye President and CEO Jason Frazier, “MindsEye’s broadcast program has been a staple in our community since 1973. However, the more recent addition of BeepBall and Audio Description programs has deepened the ability of individuals who are blind or have low vision to fully experience our region’s rich arts, culture, and athletic offerings. We’d love to provide those same opportunities to the Springfield community.”  

The Gateway Archers thank this season’s sponsors, including Permobil Seating and Positioning, Lighthouse for the Blind – St. Louis, Ameren Illinois, Lions District 26 M-2 Eye Foundation, Mascoutah Noon and Evening Lions, and St. Louis Cardinals Cares. Special support for this event is provided by the Springfield Noon Lions and University of Illinois Springfield. MindsEye’s Springfield, IL broadcast is supported by npr Illinois 91.9 UIS. 

Follow the Gateway Archers on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thegatewayarchers  

Watch the PBS Channel Nine “Living St. Louis” Archers feature: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dsht21jsU7I  

Springfield BeepBall Exhibition Event Poster
Springfield BeepBall Exhibition Event Poster

MindsEye strives to build a more inclusive community by translating vision into audio for individuals who are blind or have low vision through four primary programs. The Broadcast Information Program provides listeners access to long-form journalism and local news and materials like grocery store ads, which allow people to stay informed and maintain independence. The Audio Description Program enables every person who attends a theatre production or museum exhibit the chance to enjoy a rewarding experience. The Beepball Program raises awareness and support for athletes who are blind or visually impaired. The Arts and Culture Accessibility Cooperative provides a forum for local cultural institutions to learn about and discuss accessibility. For more information, visit MindsEyeRadio.org. Follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @mindseyeradio. MindsEye is supported in large part by Lighthouse for the Blind – St. Louis, Ameren Illinois, Emerson, and the Lutheran Foundation of St. Louis. MindsEye is a proud United Way of Greater St. Louis Safety Net Member Agency. 

For press inquiries, please contact:

Laura Foughty headshot

Laura Foughty

Development and Communications CoordinatorLFoughty@MindsEyeRadio.org618-394-6221

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