2022 was a huge year for us! We built this adult slow pitch softball league as a special place for our LGBTQIA+ and allied community to play our sport together in a safe and respectful environment, while participating in charitable initiatives and enabling funding of other local 501(c)(3) organizations that directly benefit citizens of our city and county. We dreamed big; that we could gain affiliation with the two main national amateur softball associations that focus on LGBT+ softball; after we presented Oak City Softball League to ASANA in April, and NAGAAA in August, commissioners from member cities across the United States and Canada (along with the executive boards) voted us in as Raleigh’s only member city association for both organizations — we couldn’t be more proud and grateful!
We view these affiliations as companions, yet they are distinct — ASANA is a bit more narrowly centered on our Women’s+ Division, whereas our NAGAAA membership encompasses all players in our league, in both divisions. At the player level, participation in tournaments associated with both of these organizations is entirely optional; teams that form to play in these tournaments are built on player interest and are subject to any tournament team composition rules that may exist, as each event may have separate and unique requirements.
NAGAAA (North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance)
We couldn’t be more thrilled to announce that Oak City Softball League is Raleigh’s exclusive member city organization of the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance (NAGAAA). We presented the story of our league and what we have built together in Raleigh to NAGAAA member city representatives and the executive board at the summer meetings in advance of the Gay Softball World Series in Dallas, and we were voted in, along with our great friends in Huntsville (AL), Hamilton (ON), and Sioux Falls (SD). NAGAAA is the premier LGBTQIA+ slow pitch softball association in the United States and Canada, and continues to grow; we are so grateful to have this affiliation and we are excitedly looking forward to introducing our city, our league, and our players to the other amazing NAGAAA member city leagues, beginning in 2023!
ASANA (Amateur Sports Alliance of North America)
With the formation of our Women’s+ Division in Spring 2022, we determined we had to reach for ASANA membership. There is no higher platform for amateur women’s+ softball, so it stands to reason that we were (and remain) over the moon that our league was voted in in April by city commissioners across North America, as well as ASANA leadership. Oak City Softball League women’s+ players now represent Raleigh on the national stage, eligible to play in member city tournaments as well as the ASANA World Series, which this year took place in DC in August. We sent an all association team comprised of members of our Women’s+ Division’s original 3 teams from Spring 2022, who spent a week in tournament play with teams from across the nation and beyond. We plan on holding a national-level tournament with participation by other ASANA member cities in June 2023!