NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – June is Pride month, but there’s a community in Nashville that makes the acceptance and love last year round.
Hot Mess Sports is a sports league offering a welcoming family-type atmosphere to LGBTQ+ adults in the Music City.
“Do you like kickball? Do you like friends? Then, this is the place for you,” said Morgan Miller-Wallace while sporting a huge smile and rainbow-colored glasses. “We definitely want to have as many people be part of this community as we can. Not just the people of the LGBTQ+ community, we want everybody to be a part of this. We’ve got a family on our team. Son plays catcher, dad plays pitcher, daughter plays right field.”
Wallace is a team captain for one of the kickball teams.
“To be able to offer something like this can be special to a lot of people. I know what it’s done for me,” said President of Hot Mess Sports, Grant Cobb. “People are really appreciative for what it does and what it does for the community. It brings people together and gives them a fun experience where they feel welcome and a part of it.”
With dozens of people moving to Nashville daily, spreading the word about this is made all the more important.
“If you’re new to Nashville, you’ve moved here, and you don’t know anyone at all, whether you are LGBTQ or an ally, we are open to anyone joining and coming and hanging out with us,” said Cobb.
Competition breeds community.
“Whenever you are a part of a team and you are with players and somebody makes a great catch, or somebody makes a great kick, you’re able to celebrate together,” he said. “You’re part of something big and it builds that camaraderie together.”
A camaraderie that extends beyond the playing field.
“This feels like home,” said Miller-Wallace. “Everybody just is so nice. I’ve only been married to my wife now for two years, but she is equally loved if not more loved with some of my friends here. That’s just what has been the greatest thing, we all know each other, we all laugh together, we’ve cried together.”
Everyone strives for a sense of community and belonging. Hot Mess wants to be that for people who haven’t always been able to find it.
“It’s important for us to be proud of who we are. For a lot of people in the LGBTQ community, growing up, it’s hard to do that because you may be told, “that’s not OK,”‘ said Cobb. “When you’re here and you’re a part of Hot Mess Sports and you’re part of the community, it’s OK. It’s not just OK, it’s fantastic. Everyone’s a part of if and you can be yourself, be who you are and have a community around you while you’re doing it.”