2 min

Hey batter batter….

He practices his swing with his drinking arm

PRIORITIES. Jack Deluca's not playing softball during the series - he's too busy organizing it. Credit: Mark Bogdanovic

Jack Deluca partied so hard last year he can’t quite recall who won in the Kansas City softball series.

“You mean winners and all of that? I haven’t got a clue,” admits Deluca of the Cabbagetown Group Softball League’s roadtrip to Missouri. “I haven’t got a clue who the winners were and things like this. I just had a party down there.”

That party was nothing compared to the one he’s throwing next month as the director of Series 2000.

A mere two months after Pride festivities, Toronto plays host to the 24th Annual Gay Softball World Series, from Tue, Aug 15 to 19.

One hundred and twenty teams from throughout North America are expected to take part, 80 men’s and 40 women’s.

“It’s definitely going to the largest sporting event that Toronto has ever put on. I know that for a fact,” says Deluca. “I expect this year an explosion of women to come up here, as compared to any other world series. I expect a minimum of 800 women, because the women’s division certainly promoted the series.”

And the party will be huge. Opening ceremonies will be held on Church St below Wellesley Aug 15 at 7pm, with the street closed from 5 to 10:30pm. The Series 2000 committee expects more than 10,000 people, including Olympic swimming medalist Mark Tewksbury.

The City of Toronto has designated the games as a Millennium event and will raise the rainbow flag over city hall.

While admittance to all of the games will be free, money collected from the sale of merchandise, the talent night and other events will go to the Series’ beneficiaries, the Toronto People With AIDS Foundation and the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – Ontario Division.

Series 2000 will cost about $200,000 but that money has been raised through sponsors, from bars to mega corporations. More than $130,000 has already been raised.

Games will be played in Scarborough at East Point Park and in Oshawa at Lakefront West Park.

Ironically Deluca himself has never played in a World Series, although he’s attended several.

“I’m not playing this year because of being director, so I’m a non-playing member for Sneakers,” explains Deluca. “I’ve never played in a world series. I’ve always been involved with the administration and then just playing in the CGSL.”

Deluca has been involved in the Cabbagetown Group Softball League for 22 of the league’s 25 years, playing for Sneakers, the Mustangs and TBA.

For information check out the Series 2000 website at and click on Series 2000.