Three Little League Urban Initiative Jamborees This Weekend
After a successful first year of hosting state jamborees, Little League’s Urban Initiative has almost doubled the number of events this spring, hosting seven jamborees. Three events will take place over the upcoming Memorial Day weekend. Richmond, Va., Atlanta and Houston will each host a jamboree, May 27-29.
The Little League Urban Initiative was established in 1999 to provide opportunities for communities in metropolitan areas to reap the benefits of having Little League in their neighborhoods.
Urban Initiative Mid-Atlantic Jamboree – Richmond, Va.
“The event in Richmond is going to be a lot of fun,” Demiko Ervin, Director of the Little League Urban Initiative, said. “One of the fields that we’ll be using (North Richmond Little League) is a field that was built in 2010 through the Urban Initiative Program, so it’s going to be a great opportunity to return a year later to host this event there. We have a good mix of leagues, with a few from Richmond, one from Baltimore (Md.), and a few from the coast of Virginia.”
The Mid-Atlantic Urban Initiative Jamboree is hosted by Virginia District 5 and will feature teams from seven leagues and more than 100 players. Games will be played on fields at North Richmond Little League and Highland Springs Little League.
Jamboree games on Friday (May 27) will begin at 6 p.m. with a pair of games at 7:30 p.m. concluding competition on the first day. The following day, games begin at 10 a.m., concluding with two games that start at 2:30 p.m. The semifinal games will be played at 10 a.m. and noon on Sunday at the North Richmond Little League facility. The championship game will begin at 2:30 p.m.
A picnic will be held for the jamboree teams and their families at the Highland Springs Little League facility at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday.
“Virginia District 5 has really stepped up to make this event a great experience for the kids,” Mr. Ervin said. “Their volunteers have happily taken on the task of putting together this event, and they’re committed to making sure everyone involved walks away with a positive experience. I truly can’t say enough about the amount of time and effort they’ve put into this Jamboree.”
Leagues Participating in the Little League Urban Initiative Mid-Atlantic Jamboree
- Bethlehem Little League (Richmond, Va.) (2 teams)
- North Richmond Little League (Richmond, Va.)
- Highland Springs Little League (Highland Springs, Va.)
- Hampton Wythe Little League (Hampton, Va.)
- Phoebus Little League (Hampton, Va.)
- Central Accomack Little League (Accomack County, Va.)
- South Baltimore Little League (Baltimore, Md.)
Urban Initiative Georgia State Jamboree – Atlanta, Ga.
“It’s great to be doing the Georgia Jamboree again,” Mr. Ervin said. “We received a lot of volunteer support there last year. This year, we have several different companies who are stepping up to help make this event a great experience for the kids.
“The Atlanta Braves have been gracious enough to donate tickets to their game for all of the Jamboree teams, which will be a great experience,” Mr. Ervin said. “The Braves are also sending out their B.A.T (Braves Around Town) Team to the Jamboree with games and some giveaways for the players and fans.”
The Urban Initiative Georgia State Jamboree will feature teams from seven leagues and more than 130 players (the participating leagues are listed at the end of the release). Games will be played on fields at Belvedere Little League in Decatur, Ga.
Jamboree games on Friday (May 27) will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a pair of games at 8 p.m. concluding competition on the first day. The following day, games begin at 9 a.m., concluding with two games that start at 3 p.m. The semifinal games will be played at 11 a.m. on Sunday with the championship game to follow at 1:30 p.m.
The players, managers and coaches from teams playing in the jamboree will be given free tickets to the Atlanta Braves game Saturday night at Turner Field against the Cincinnati Reds. The tickets are being provided by the Braves.
“Georgia was the first state Jamboree we did last year, and it will be nice to see how the event will continue to evolve there in the years to come,” Mr. Ervin said. “With the continued support of the Atlanta Braves and other local businesses, the jamboree should continue to grow and thrive, and we’ll continue to provide a jamboree for the Urban Initiative leagues in the state of Georgia to participate in.”
Leagues Participating in the Little League Urban Initiative Georgia State Jamboree
- Belvedere Little League (Decatur, Ga.) (2 teams)
- Ben Hill Little League (Atlanta, Ga.)
- Macon Little League (Macon, Ga.)
- Metro Atlanta YMCA Jr. Braves Little League (Atlanta, Ga.)
- Milford Little League (Marietta, Ga.)
- SALLY Little League (Columbus, Ga.)
- South Fulton Little League (Fulton County, Ga.)
Urban Initiative Texas State Jamboree – Houston, Texas
“The Texas State Jamboree is special because it’s hosted by the Council of Houston Inner City Little Leagues (C.H.I.L.L) and because Houston is one of the original cities of the Urban Initiative,” Mr. Ervin said. “We had a tremendous amount of volunteer umpire support at this event last year, and we are looking forward to getting that same type of support this year. We have a unique mix of leagues participating in this event, which mirror the make-up of the state of Texas.”
The Urban Initiative Texas State Jamboree in Houston is hosted by the Council of Houston Inner City Little Leagues and will feature teams from 15 leagues and more than 200 players (the participating leagues are listed at the end of the release). Games will be played on fields at Magnolia National Little League, Houston East End Little League, Neartown Little League and South Houston Little League.
Jamboree games on Friday (May 27) will be played at 6 and 8 p.m. The following day, games begin at 9:30 a.m., concluding with two games that start at 2 p.m. The semifinal games will be played at 11 a.m. on Sunday, at the Houston Astros MLB Urban Youth Academy, with the championship game to follow at 1:30 p.m.
At the invitation of the Astros, all jamboree teams and their parents will attend the Houston game Saturday night at Minute Maid Park against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
“As they’ve done for many years, the Houston Astros continue to support the Little League Urban Initiative Program and this year’s Jamboree event,” Mr. Ervin said. “Not only are they donating tickets for the teams to attend the Astros game on Saturday, they’re also allowing us to use their brand new MLB Houston Astros Urban Youth Academy to play our championship games on Sunday. We are thankful for the relationship we’ve been able to develop with the Astros, and are appreciative of their support of Little League Baseball and Softball.”
Leagues Participating in the Little League Urban Initiative Texas State Jamboree
- Bandera County Little League (Bandera, Texas)
- Capitol Park Little League (San Antonio, Texas)
- Denver Harbor Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Dixie Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Heights-Norhill Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Houston East End Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Magnolia National Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Natalia Little League (Natalia, Texas)
- Neartown Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Northside National Little League (Houston, Texas) (2 teams)
- OFA Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Rice Little League (Sheridan, Texas)
- South Houston Little League (Houston, Texas)
- Spindletop Little League (Beaumont, Texas)
- Zapata County Little League (Zapata, Texas)
In addition, Dick’s Sporting Goods, a Little League sponsor, is pitching in to make each 2011 Urban Initiative Jamboree a memorable experience by providing several items for each player at all seven jamborees.
The seven jamborees this summer take the place of the annual Little League Urban Initiative Jamboree hosted by Little League International each Memorial Day weekend. During the six years (2004-09) the Jamboree was played at the Little League International complex in South Williamsport, Pa., teams from 66 different Urban Initiative leagues and more than 800 players participated.
The Little League Urban Initiative is now operating with more than 200 leagues in nearly 85 cities in the United States. The Urban Initiative also has participated in nearly 30 field renovation/development projects, including its most recent project in Richmond, Va.
For more information on Little League’s Urban Initiative, contact Mr. Ervin at: dervin@LittleLeague.org; or (570) 326-1921. More information on the Little League Urban Initiative is also available on the Little League web site at: www.LittleLeague.org; or on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/LittleLeagueUrbanInitiative.
2011 Little League Urban Initiative Jamboree Schedule
- April 29-May 1 – Southern California Jamboree (Los Angeles, Calif.) – Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Baseball
- May 13-15 – Florida State Jamboree (Tampa, Fla.) – Junior League (13-14-year-olds) Baseball
- May 20-22 – Northern California Jamboree (Stockton, Calif.) - Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Softball
- May 27-29 – Mid-Atlantic Jamboree (Richmond, Va.) - Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Baseball
- May 27-29 – Georgia State Jamboree (Atlanta, Ga.) - Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Baseball
- May 27-29 – Texas State Jamboree (Houston, Texas) - Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Baseball
- June 10-12 – Illinois State Jamboree (Chicago, Ill.) - Major Division (9-12-year-olds) Baseball