SPRINGFIELD, Mo — The man whose New Years Resolution began right here in Springfield is now catching on across the nation.

“It’s not an official resolution yet, but I’m pretty committed to it already,” Ethan Bryan originally said back in January. 

143 days later, he’s remained faithful.

Thankfully a lot has changed since I first shared his story back in January. Including the weather: 20 degree jackets have now been transformed into t-shirts.

His is custom.

And everyone sold from Phelps Grove Outfitters benefits the Springfield Miracle League.

His once unofficial resolution is now a hashtag a full 5-months strong.

Blog posts and pictures, which now include the entire KOLR10 Daybreak Crew, my own father, former Springfield Mayor Bob Stephens, and ‘The Rookie.’ No, not Dennis Quade.

The REAL DEAL: Jim Morris, whom Ethan played catch with outside Kauffman Stadium.

“I’ve received invitations from coast to coast,” said Ethan. “I got an invitation to come to the Dominican Republic last night. I don’t even have a passport.”

“I would not have ever imagined that.”

“I got an invitation from the Netherlands! Once again, no passport but it’s cool to get the invitation.”

Heck, even Wilson stepped up to the plate, replacing what used to be his glove from high school. It’s sharp.

“So what’s next?,” I asked him.

“A road-trip. The Griswold’s would be proud!”

Ethan and his family will begin a 10 day trip across the Midwest beginning tomorrow. He already has scheduled catching sessions.

  • Kansas City, MO
  • Omaha, NE
  • Sioux Falls, SD
  • Wallingford, IA
  • Davenport, IA
  • Rockford, IL
  • Chicago, IL

“I grew up playing catch,” he said. “I used to meet up with my dad every day at his car and we would play catch. I think that little kid part of me is absolutely delighted to be doing something like this.”

Then I asked the question that caught him off-guard: Has this changed you?

He paused.

“The thing that has changed me is the people that I meet every day. These are all people I would not have met if I were not intentional about trying to meet someone new to play catch with every day.”

You can follow Ethan on Twitter to follow his daily journey. 

He has also set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for some of the travel expenses.