Elmora Youth League Opens Baseball & Softball Registration

ELIZABETH—Elmora Youth League is holding registration for their 2009 Little League baseball and ASA Softball leagues this week.

“January is registration month for the league,” said Ralph Abbate, league information officer. “The next few weeks are very busy for our volunteers, but we need to complete registrations in January to set up the league.”

In-person registration will be conducted on Jan. 8, 10, 11 and 13 at the Elmora Racquet Club, located at 23 Fernwood Terrence.  The times of the registrations are 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 8; 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Jan. 10; noon to 2 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 11 and 7 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 13.  In 2009, Elmora Youth League will offer baseball for children aged 5 to 12 and softball for girls aged 6 to 15.

The Elmora Youth League will celebrate their 35th anniversary in 2009.  The league was founded in 1974 by parents from the Elmora Section of Elizabeth.  In the beginning the league played its games at the Kean Fields in Union, now the location of the Phil Rizzuto soccer fields.

For the last 11 years the league played their games on the Thomas Hanratty fields in Elizabeth. The fields were dedicated in memory of State Trooper Thomas J. Hanratty in 1998.  In 2008, the Elmora Troopers captured the NJ Little League District 7 championship with their 11 year old baseball team.  This district flag represents the second championship for the league, which affiliated with the Williamsport, Pa.-based international organization in 1999.

“I feel that it is necessary to build a solid foundation for all of our players and that foundation begins with coaching” stated Victor Alvarez, who will lead the league as president for the 36th season.

“We are planning to purchase a training deck that each coach will be able to utilize to run organized practices,” he continued.  “Local high school baseball coaches will be running clinics for our volunteers that will help them teach baseball and softball skills to the players in the league.  Last season some of our coaches attended a session hosted by Roselle Catholic Baseball Coach John Schmitt.”

“We are looking to build on that experience for 2009,” said Abbate.   

“Opening day is scheduled for Saturday, April 4, but our volunteers are working now to get everything set up,” said Alvarez, “There is much work to be done and we hope our families help us by registering early.”

The www.ElmoraYouth.com web site is loaded with information, photos and a history of the league.  In 2005, EYL conducted a search to recover old league books and photos for their archives.  The effort was extremely successful thanks to the efforts of former board members, players and coaches.  Many of the items are on display on the league website. 

The league is still looking for league books from the 1985, 1986, 1987 and 1988 seasons.  If you have these documents, e-mail ElmoraYouth@aol.com.

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