Broad Ripple Dart League Offers Friendly Competition In Local Bars
Writer / Jon Shoulders
Photographer / Kerch Creative
Ever been out for a meal or a drink in midtown and noticed an organized, lively game of darts going on in your peripheral vision? There’s a decent chance that was a rousing match between teams from the Broad Ripple Dart League (BRDL) – that’s right, Broad Ripple is home to a structured league for those serious about getting their darts on.
“I just put up some flyers prior to that first season and ended up getting some emails from people interested,” says Perkett, a Detroit native and biologist who works at Corteva Agriscience on Indy’s northside.
“The Wellington was still in existence then and we played there and at Sahm’s Place over on Keystone. I set some rules to it based on my experience in other dart leagues, and it started to grow.”
Prior to 2012 Perkett had played organized darts back in Detroit and with the Indianapolis Darters Association, which at the time held most of its matches on the southside. As a Broad Ripple resident, he soon became interested enough in the sport to begin a league in his own proverbial backyard.
“We’re purely local here in Broad Ripple, and we’re totally independent of any other larger organization,” Perkett explains. “I got four teams to join that first season, and we’ve had as many as 12 teams in a season since then.”
Team registration begins in January for the spring season and in July for the fall season, and participants pay a $25 fee which goes toward trophies that are handed out at the end of each 10-week season. Those interested in signing up on an individual basis are typically placed by Perkett with a team, and groups of individuals are often formed into separate teams.
“At the end of the 10 weeks, we have a playoff that goes about three to four weeks depending on how many teams qualify,” Perkett says. “So it’s not a huge time commitment for anybody. It’s a team format and the teams need to have three to six people, so if you have more than three then someone can not show up and the team can still play that night.”
The league match format consists of 14 games per match, each game being worth one point. The victor has to win more than seven points to win the match, and an overtime game occurs in the event of a 7-7 tie. Perkett keeps track of match outcomes and posts results and standings on the league Facebook page.
“It’s very family-oriented and we have a broad spectrum of people who are part of the league,” says Perkett, adding that participants typically consist of both Broad Ripple residents and folks from surrounding areas including Brownsburg, Carmel and Avon. “We have people with PhDs, and people of all types and backgrounds. There are some people in their sixties playing in the league and there are some kids in their early twenties. And it’s purely recreational so we welcome all skill levels.”
League champions are awarded the Broad Ripple Cup, a giant trophy akin to the National Hockey League Stanley Cup, which Perkett says champs often spend their winning night treating like an oversized communal beer mug.
Perkett says getting to know participants of all types, as well as the owners and staff at the establishments where matches are held (currently None the Wiser Tap Room, Broad Ripple Tavern, Old Pro’s Table, Broad Ripple Brewpub, The Corner and Fat Dan’s Deli), has been perhaps the most enjoyable aspect of running the league.
In 2017 the BRDL held a benefit tournament that raised $800 for The Mustard Seed of Indy, a nonprofit that provides veterans with furniture and assistance with finding homes. Perkett says two league members employed with the Indiana Department of Veterans’ Affairs, including Deputy Director Matt Vincent, were instrumental in the success of the tourney.
“It’s been great to have a bunch of people get together and all kind of get in on the whole idea of having fun with some friendly competition,” Perkett says. “And all of the proprietors at the various venues in Broad Ripple where we have our matches have been very welcoming and eager to work with us.”
Visit facebook.com/BroadRippleDartLeague for additional info or to register for the next league.