Courtesy Parkland Little League.

By Jill Fox

This spring, don’t miss your chance to hit a home run by registering today for the Parkland Little League and avoid those pesky late fees by registering your child before the Monday, December 31, deadline.

Established in 1990, the 2019 spring baseball season is open to boys and girls of any skill level, and includes divisions for players starting at age five.

Parkland Mayor, Christine Hunschofsky believes that the little league is a wonderful sports organization in the city with dedicated volunteers providing a great opportunity to meet other families while the children are developing their baseball skills.

Hunschofsky said that when her boys were younger, both participated in Parkland Little League, and she volunteered as an assistant coach. They met so many wonderful families through Parkland Little League and developed lasting friendships.

Parkland Little League treasurer, Mark Longaro, has been involved in Parkland baseball for four years.

“It is truly a recreational league to teach the young players the game of baseball, proper mechanics and show a love for the game that a lot of the coaches and board members have to share.”

Over the past 25 years, the little league has continued to grow and thrive within the city of Parkland, with over 450 participants last spring. Many of the city’s players have gone on to play high school and college baseball. One in particular, Parkland’s own Anthony Rizzo, plays professionally, and won a World Series Championship in 2016.

According to Longaro, Parkland parents cherish the fact that baseball is not a contact sport. Enrollment has steadily increased through the years, and teams play at both Terramar and Pine Trails parks.

With an all-volunteer coaching staff selected by the board, they are required to pass two background checks. Coaches are comprised of both mothers and fathers, many with previous baseball experience, and some have played major league baseball, including Florida Marlins’ Juan Pierre, who brought home a World Series Championship in 2003 and lives in Parkland with his wife and four children.

Parkland Little League President Robert Travinski said that his family gets excited for this time of year when they gear up for the spring season, get back to baseball, and see all of their baseball friends and family once again.

The fee for spring registration is $180, with a $20 discount for second and third siblings. There will be a $50 late fee for any registrations after December 31, and placement is not guaranteed after this date. Evaluations will be held in mid-January, with practices starting in February.

Stay tuned for opening day, usually the first weekend in March at Terramar Park, where festivities will include a home run derby, rides, bounce houses, even a dunk tank full of coaches.

For more information on spring registration or for anyone interested in volunteering their time as a coach, go to Parkland Little League or call 954-604-2442.