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 > Little League Online > Media > Little League News Archive > 2014 > January-April > Little League® Urban Initiative Celebrates its 15th Anniversary at Jamborees Around the United States

Little League® Urban Initiative Celebrates its 15th Anniversary at Jamborees Around the United States

Little League® Urban Initiative Celebrates its 15th Anniversary at Jamborees Around the United States

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Every child deserves the opportunity to have a Little League® experience. Character. Courage. Loyalty. Teamwork. Dedication. Fair Play. These are the morals that are instilled on Little League Baseball® and Little League Softball® fields around the world. And, for 15 years, thanks to the Little League Urban Initiative, children living in urban neighborhoods have been getting the opportunity to have a Little League experience.

In 1999, as Little League celebrated its 60th Anniversary, the organization launched the Urban Initiative as a way to provide communities in need with resources to help establish Little League Baseball and Little League Softball programs. Today, thanks to the Urban Initiative, there are more than 220 leagues in nearly 90 cities that help provide a Little League experience to 52,000 children throughout the United States.

“We are excited to commemorate the 15th Anniversary of the Little League Urban Initiative in the same year that we celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the founding of Little League,” said Pat Wilson, Little League Senior Vice President of Operations and Program Development. “The Urban Initiative gives thousands of children the opportunity to come together and learn valuable life lessons on baseball and softball fields around the United States. We’re looking forward to a wonderful 15th Anniversary Year with great moments on and off the diamond, and at our Urban Initiative Jamborees.”

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Lemon Grove Little League celebrating with the banner they won at the 2014 Southern California Urban Initiative Jamboree earlier this year.

To celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Little League Urban Initiative and the 75th Anniversary of Little League, Urban Initiative Jamborees are being held at nine locations around the United States. Created in 2004, the Jamborees have provided an opportunity to boys and girls to compete in a Little League International Tournament atmosphere. With nine World Series events in baseball and softball, the Little League International Tournament is the world’s largest, premier youth baseball and softball tournament. At the Jamborees, Little Leaguers participate in a weekend of high-level competition, while making lifelong memories and new friends.

“The Urban Initiative Jamborees provide a unique opportunity for children living in urban communities to come together for a weekend of competition and camaraderie,” said Demiko Ervin, Little League Director of the Urban Initiative. “This year’s events will be even more exciting as we mark two great milestones in Little League history, 75 years since our founding and 15 years of the Urban Initiative.”

The 2014 Little League Urban Initiative Jamborees kicked off in April with the Southern California Jamboree and the Florida State Jamboree. They will run through June with events in Stockton, Calif. (May 16-18); Memphis, Tenn. (May 23-25); Houston, Texas (May 30-June 1); Portland, Ore. (May 30-June 1); Bronx, N.Y. (June 20-22); and Milwaukee, Wis. (June 27-29).