Ryan Truesdell tournament still going strong after 10 years
Published 4:29 pm Sunday, September 10, 2017
This weekend marked the 10th year of the Ryan “Pie” Truesdell Memorial Tournament. Eighteen teams signed up to take part in the annual tournament that spanned from Saturday into Sunday at Snyder Park.
The weekend included softball, raffle tickets, concessions and music being played throughout the complex.
The tournament weekend was set up to honor Ryan “Pie” Truesdell, an Albert Lea graduate who died after being trapped in a grain elevator at Glenville Grain in summer 2007. In high school Truesdell was a two-time All-Conference honoree on the baseball team and was captain for two years.
Raffle prizes for the weekend included food items from the concession stand and gift certificates to many local businesses, as well as a signed guitar that was up for auction.
Even though the tournament was a little lower on teams than in previous years, 18 is still a good number for softball tournaments around the area. Truesdell’s father, Scott, talked about why so many teams show up for the tournament year after year.
“People always tell me it’s because of my son, because he was such a good guy,” he said. “I hear stories every year about how people used to play with him and thought he was an all around great guy. There are guys and teams here that haven’t missed a single tournament.”
When the memorial weekend started in 2007 it included a fishing tournament, golf tournament, volleyball tournament and bean bag tournament. After 10 years, softball has proven to be the most popular tournament and was one of Truesdell’s favorite sports.
Money raised over the weekend goes back into the community as a way to help area youth, something which Scott Truesdell is very proud of. He said giving the money away is one of his favorite parts about the entire thing. In the past he has given to the Albert Lea Anglers, ARC of Freeborn County and youth sports teams, among others.
Although Scott Truesdell said the weekend is a great way to honor the memory of his son, he sometimes thinks about letting someone else take over the tournament.
“It’s a lot of planning and work,” he said. “I would like for one of my kids to take over some year and run everything. There’s so many things leading up to it that have to get done, but we never want this to go away.
“I just want to thank the city of Albert Lea and what they do for us. If it wasn’t for those businesses and individuals who donate, we wouldn’t be here.”