A Worthy Cause
Jun 26, 2017 09:50PM
● By Elena Hutslar
Pictured (LtoR): Coach Seth Stockton, Andrew Lawrence, Payton deBonneville, Nolan Lawrence, Amon Williams, Coach Steve Elliott, JT Griffin, Tyler Boyce, Mateo Roberts, Duncan Adams, Lorenzo Fonseca, Calvin Reed and Dillon Elliott.
On March 30, several members of the Alhambra High School junior varsity baseball team spent their day volunteering at the annual Little League Challenger Baseball Jamboree. The all-day event was held at Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek, and a total of 24 teams from around the Bay Area were in attendance. The Challenger Division was established in 1989 as a separate division of Little League to enable boys and girls with physical and mental challenges the opportunity to enjoy the game of baseball. Today, over 30,000 children participate in more than 900 Challenger Divisions worldwide.
The Alhambra ball players arrived at the park bright and early and began the morning by prepping the ball fields for an exciting day of baseball games. Once the action began, the volunteers traded in their rakes and shovels for microphones and partnered up with teammates to show off creative, play-by-play calling skills. When the Alhambra players weren’t busy announcing the participants over the PA system, they were rooting on the young athletes and exchanging handshakes and high fives throughout the day.
The participants took a break in the action to attend a special awards ceremony. They also had the chance to visit with family and friends during a barbeque lunch. The Alhambra players used this opportunity to mingle with participants and praise the young athletes for their spectacular performances on the diamond. They were also invited to pose for a few group photos with participants before heading off to the ball fields for a final round of games.
Rich Brightman, one of the lead organizers for Sunday’s event, said the Challenger Jamboree would not be possible without the help and support from our local sponsors, donors and volunteers. Mr. Brightman was very impressed by the large turnout of volunteers from the Alhambra baseball program and is looking forward to seeing them back at the event next year.
Alhambra High School JV coach Steve Elliott said he was grateful his players had the opportunity to participate in this special event. “I think it’s important we teach our high school athletes the value of giving back to their communities, especially when it involves a program they can easily relate to.” Coach Elliott said he felt the boys were a little humbled by their experience today. “I think it was definitely an eye opener for our players to watch the participants compete on the field today. It puts things into perspective and reminds us all of what we have to be thankful for.”For more information on the Little League Challenger Division, contact your local Little League president, or email challenger@LittleLeague.org.