The Season That Never Ends: Cornhole ATL Welcomes Athens Competitors Year-round

The game cornhole dots the Athens landscape every Saturday during football season, but the rest of the year, it can be hard to find. One organization is working to change that.

Jeff Brawand, an Ohio native looking for a way to keep playing his favorite game in a new city, started Cornhole ATL in 2011, and registration for the spring season ends March 11.

“Growing up, we used to always play cornhole,” Brawand said. “When I moved to Atlanta, I noticed people were playing games like cornhole recreationally. So, I said, why not cornhole?”

The organization’s leagues took off and now are present in 14 cities across Georgia. Cornhole ATL started its Athens league two years ago with weekly matches at Southern Brewing Company.

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“We really grew a lot when we started playing in different breweries,” Brawand said. “I thought Athens would be a great fit due to all the cool new breweries in town. Cornhole ATL also gives folks something different to do instead of just going out.”

Brawand and his staff also realized that people play cornhole for different reasons. Some want the competition; some just want to drink a beer and be social.

Drinking and cornhole go hand in hand. literally,” Brawand said with a chuckle.

Cornhole ATL structures their leagues into three divisions based on skill level: beginner, intermediate or advanced. All ages are encouraged to play the game.

“We had a couple in Atlanta that was 85 and 92 years old,” said Brawand. “They won the whole beginner tournament a few years ago.”

Cornhole ATL seasons last for seven weeks. Competitors play weekly matches in their city for the first six weeks, with the playoffs happening during Week Seven. The best teams, regardless of city, then come together and compete in the “City Cornament.”

Brawand said he is proud of what Cornhole ATL has been able to accomplish so far.

“Cornhole is all about having fun and meeting new people,” said Brawand. “We’ve given (the game) a nice avenue for people to enjoy it all over Georgia.”

Wyatt Nail is a senior majoring in journalism and minoring in sports management.

 

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