Barren County to host regional softball tournament; millions in tourism revenue expected

GLASGOW, Ky. – This week, Barren County will host the Ohio Valley Babe Ruth regionals. 

This four-day softball tournament, running from Thursday through Sunday July 11, will allow for around 40 to 50 teams of girls ages 8-16 at Jackie Browning Park in Glasgow.

The regionals are usually held in Northern Kentucky, but this will be the second time that Barren County has the opportunity to hold this large tournament. The last time Barren County hosted the tournament in 2016, tourism brought the community around $3-4 million in revenue.

The tournament brings anywhere from 5,500 to 7,000 tourists to the area whose revenue will benefit local restaurants, hotels and many small businesses. Barren County Judge-Executive Michael Hale said he hopes to one day call Glasgow home to the tournament for as many years as possible. 

“I think it’s great, because it brings so much to our community. To rotate those dollars from business to business, that’s what I’m really looking forward to,” said Hale.

Barren County Parks Director Maxie Murray came here when Covid first hit the community. He said watching the kids have the opportunity to play in a tournament and chase their athletic dreams means everything to him.

“It’s a good thing for our kids around here to have. They say that what they do in our league or local park can transpire into other things. You can reach the state level, you can even reach the regional level. We can even go to the World Series just like they see these college students playing in the World Series softball. You know, it gives these kids something to work toward,” said Murray.

Murray said he sees this tournament bringing more softball players in the future.

“I’m really excited about us holding it here, so even local kids who didn’t make the All-Star teams can still see what they can work toward to make in the future,” said Murray.

Hale wants to give a big thank you to the Glasgow Tourism Department for making this tournament happen.