Sixteen-inch softball has been an institution at the Hodgkins Park District since the 1970s. It started with church leagues playing on an old baseball field and quickly evolved into one of the finest homes for “A”, Major, and Pro League softball teams. With its legendary twenty-foot high and two hundred-fifty foot fence and its perfectly manicured infield, great players from across the nation have come to the small town of Hodgkins, Illinois to play the game they love.
As one of the founders of the now famous Lite Softball Classic, Hodgkins Park made a name for itself in the world of sixteen-inch softball. Championships were won and memories were made throughout the two-week tournament that is now in it s twelfth year. The Hodgkins Park District installed lighting in the late 1990s. As a result, more games were played and more players participated in their favorite sport. As softball grew in popularity, Hodgkins became involved with the Westchester / Hodgkins Pro League. Over the years, this league showcased many legendary and respected teams in softball.
Besides sixteen-inch softball Hodgkins Park has become the home to a wide variety of teams and uses. The Lyons Township Blazers, a girl’s twelve-inch fast-pitch softball organization, has called Hodgkins Park their home for twenty years. The Park district hosts two annual softball tournaments for local middle schools. It has been used as an emergency field numerous times for area junior and high school teams. The University of Akron’s Women’s Softball team twice used the field for practice when they came to play Northwestern University. The Hodgkins Park District has always encouraged young players to get involved in softball for personal development and to ensure the future of the sport.
The Park District and its former Executive Director, Ronald Kubicki, have become synonymous with sixteen-inch softball. Without Kubicki’s leadership, guidance, and foresight, softball might never have been played at Hodgkins Park. Originally meant for baseball, it became one of softball’s premier destinations and a place where players and fans could participate in a safe and fun environment.