Film highlights the ‘pain, passion, and purpose’ of youth baseball

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Baseball Beyond Borders (BBB), Seattle’s sports-based community development organization, released its first documentary film, “Reconciliation Tour.” The documentary takes a powerful journey through the heart of the south, including youth baseball, civil rights, and reconciliation. The film’s message centers on truth, hope, play, and healing through baseball.

Beginning in Mississippi, the youth of BBB host a clinic at the Historically Black College University, Jackson State. Kids are introduced to baseball for the first time as the organization keeps its promise to elevate and empower through the sport.

BBB teaches kids baseball and life lessons. DJ Adams, a youth participant, states, “a team means all the people working together to do stuff. I like being on a team because I can’t beat anybody with just me. I need help.”

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Tackling gender equity is vital to BBB. The organization aims to remove disparity and allow girls to explore their potential in baseball. While at Jackson State University, joy is evident in the faces of both boys and girls.

The film culminates its journey by traveling to Montgomery, Alabama, with a visit to The Equal Justice Legacy Museum and Memorial. The youth become immersed in the sights and sounds of black history, experiencing the chance to connect across generations of Americans impacted by racial inequality. Black baseball traditions are honored, and the participants understand the contributions brought to this game, including establishing the Negro National League.

On February 1st, Alaska Airlines added the “Reconciliation Tour” to their in-flight entertainment systems, putting it in the hands of over 44 million customers annually.

“Reconciliation Tour” was co-produced with Converge, Seattle’s Black-owned Emmy Award-winning production house. Dan Wilson, former Seattle Mariner’s catcher, shared the film’s message of hope through baseball: “We were moved to see the BBB Kings interacting with the youth of West Jackson. Baseball was the common denominator, but equal access and justice are the hopeful outcomes. As Dr. John Perkins said, we must play together.”

Since launching in 2014, BBB emphasizes reconciliation and healing through sports, connecting kids’ passion for baseball to sports-based faith-centered youth baseball. The organization is built on pain, passion, and purpose. As they move toward the future, BBB seeks to break down existing racial barriers equitably with baseball as an agent of change.

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