Athens Dart Association is holding a "Double Up Against Hunger" tournament and food drive Saturday, with proceeds going to the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia.
“We wanted to do something that’s fun and is good for the community,” said Eric West, Athens Dart Association president.
Athens Dart Association, though remaining under the radar, has a relatively large following and a surprisingly long history. The group started more than 30 years ago and contains 23 teams divided into three divisions.
“I’ve talked to guys who are still in the league who started playing in ’87 or ’86,” West said. “Right now, I’d venture to say we have around 260 players in the league.”
The teams are each backed by a local bar and contain six to nine players. The teams compete every Wednesday during the group’s two 14-week seasons.
“We find a bar for the team to throw at, and the bar usually pays the dues for the team,” West said.
The Rail, where Saturday’s tournament will be held, hosts four teams. Other bars hosting multiple teams include Nowhere Bar, Georgia Bar and Loco’s East Side.
“The Rail is the best place to do it because they have eight boards, and we can have eight teams going at a time," West said.
The tournament on Saturday will be a doubles tournament with each team bringing 20 cans. As of Tuesday, 15 teams had already signed up.
“The cutoff for sign-ups isn’t until the day of,” West said. “We’d like to donate at least 400 cans.”
While the group doesn’t generally hold charity-based events, it isn’t afraid to give back to the community.
“At the end of every season, we donate a majority of dues' money to the Toys for Tots Foundation,” West said.
Though the league seems to have plenty of teams, it doesn’t have a lot of college-aged teams, which is surprising in a college town like Athens.
“We have some college students in the league right now, but I feel like we should have more. I was thinking about starting a Greek division,” West said. “It’s a great excuse to hang out with your buddies and do something that’s competitive and is still fun.”
DOUBLE UP AGAINST HUNGER TOURNAMENT
When: Saturday, Sept. 14
Where: The Rail