Republican softball: It’s now a Kenai tradition, and a break from campaigning for some old-fashioned Americana


The second annual Republican softball game in Kenai on Saturday was also a joint fundraiser for Districts 6, 7, and 8 Republicans, with over 75 attending the game as spectators, players, and supporters at the Kenai Park Strip Ballpark, where the weather was cloudy but not rainy.

Representatives Ben Carpenter, Ron Gillham, and Kenai Assemblyman Bill Elam were among the players who reported in for teams. Jeff Vance, husband of Rep. Sarah Vance of Homer, also played, while Kenai Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce was an umpire. Rep. Vance was also at the event all day.

District 7’s team included candidate Justin Ruffridge and the man he is challenging — Rep. Gillham — on the field together.

Senate Seat C candidate Heath Smith was on the field for District 6.

There were three teams, one for each district, and the tournament had a round-robin of five-inning games. District 8 was the overall winner. Ringers on that team were Rep. Carpenter and Assemblyman Elam.

Tuckerman Babcock, running for State Senate, was at the ballpark all day helping out, while Jesse Bjorkman, also running for Senate, made an appearance to spectate for an hour.

On site early to set up were Chairmen of their districts George Hall-6, Dave Peck-7, Wayne Ogle-8, all at the park by 9 am.

District 6 Vice Chair Charlie Franz was the auctioneer for the outcry auction for desserts. District 8 Chair Wayne Ogle, Helen Ogle, and Barb Blakeley ran the concession stand, while District 6 Secretary/Treasurer Cassie Lawver, Terrell Brewer and Kim Bates led dessert team.

District 7 Precinct Leader Garrett Ennis and Mayor Charlie Pierce’s Special Assistant Dil Uhlin served as classic baseball play-by-play announcers.

It was pure Americana in Kenai for politicos. Unlike at Thursday night’s Congressional Baseball Game at the Nationals Park, when Democrat Rep. Linda Sanchez flipped the bird to the Republican team, no middle fingers were extended in Kenai.


  1. Baseball isn’t much of a democrat’s sport. Kickball is the democrats’ game, it’s easy, it’s safer.

  2. Good to read Bjorkman’s and Ruffridge’s names in a political story. A couple of high quality, local, conservatives, for office.

  3. Lots of people helped to set this up in a variety of ways. But a special thank you to Kathy Medcoff who co-ordinated the participation of all 3 districts. Kathy is the Vice Chair of D-7 and came up with the idea for the soft ball games!!

  4. District 8 lost to district 6 in the round robin event… district 7 which was a blend of players from district 6 and 7 lost to district 8…. Then district 6 lost to district 7 which was a blend of district 7 and 8! In the end we were all winners! Great article!
    The score keeper

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