There are plenty of softball tournaments taking place during the summer, but one impacts those who are battling for their lives. 

Co–ed teams from around the area, kicked off an annual tournament that has been taking place for the last five years.

Although teams are fighting for the right to hold up the championship trophy, their presence itself, is helping recognize those who are contending against a much tougher opponent.

Hawkins Chevrolet and the American Cancer Society have partnered to create this event, to not only bring awareness but raise money for research.

Although softball is the highlight, this is only day two of the event, which started last night at Hawkins dealership and throughout the five years that they've been putting this on, they've raised closed to $30,000.

Allowing hundreds of people to congregate and play for a cure is what makes this so impactful.

Event Coordinator Mike Fischer said "Just in the last few years, we've had so many people that, that we personally know in our community that have been diagnosed. And it kind of hits home, you know. There's not anybody who has not been affected by cancer in one way or the other, or know somebody that has. The community comes together and as you can see from people showing up, that aren't even playing, it's full all the time and they care about it."

Everyone had a chance to show their support, whether it be teams chipping in or fans purchasing t–shirts and other merchandise.

For those who have personally overcome this disease, one woman encourages others who may be facing cancer, to keep their head up.

Stage 4 Hodgkin's Lymphoma Survivor Megan Schwab said "The biggest thing is staying positive. I think your attitude and how you go into this and really believing that your body can control this."

Kids also got to enjoy the festivities by getting to play in bounce houses as well as sack racing and other activities.

The competition will continue tomorrow at the Winnebago Avenue Sports Complex, as the three–day gathering will come to a close following the championship game.

- KEYC 12