Freedom Classic underway at Grainger Stadium

Published: Feb. 24, 2023 at 11:24 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

KINSTON, N.C. (WITN) -The Freedom Classic baseball series is underway this weekend at Historic Grainger Stadium in Kinston where the U.S. Naval Academy and the Air Force Academy take on each other.

The series has been going on for 50 years, 13 of which have been in Kinston. It’s an opportunity for Veterans, active service members, and fans to enjoy watching three days of military competition on the diamond.

Navy dad Kirk Smith was in attendance and said, “Air Force and Navy. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

The series takes place over the course of three days, but this is only the second year that it’s been back due to the pandemic.

Army Staff Sergeant Tlacuilo Bernal says, “It’s nice to see that we’re able to unite and have a little competition going on. Even though I’m not Navy or Air Force, it’s nice to know that we as the Army can join.”

Smith’s son Collin plays for Navy and says the importance of the matchup means more than just great competition for the players. “It’s bigger than baseball, everything they do is bigger than baseball. This is just a little perk they do and it’s something that’s been special for all.”

Game two is Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Game three is Sunday at 12:30 p.m.

Tickets are free for active military and children under three, $3.00 for retired military, military dependents, Veterans, seniors and students, and $7.00 for adults 18 and above.