Children should play Little League® for three reasons. Ranked in level of importance, they are 1) To have fun, 2) To make friends, 3) To play baseball or softball. The Little League experience is so much more than what happens on the field, and parents play an incredibly important role in making sure their Little Leaguer® and his or her fellow teammates enjoy themselves as much as possible. So, whether its during the regular season, special games, local playoffs, or the Little League International Tournament, we encourage parents to take an active role in creating an environment packed with smiles, support, and spirit.
Show Your Support
Be part of the team by designing and wearing spirit shirts that match your Little Leaguer’s uniform. Your son or daughter will appreciate the support, as well as some team unity that extends beyond the field and dugout. Sit with other team parents, and politely cheer and chant. Bring a positive energy that is infectious, and create an atmosphere that everyone, from neighbors to other family members, will want to be a part of.
Go Team! Signs
Create fun signs, and hang them near your team’s dugout. It’s okay to create a sign that singles out your Little Leaguer, but what’s better is to create posters that show support for the entire team. Have some fun with the signs. Be creative and light-hearted without emphasizing the need to win. Remember, it’s about the experience, not the victories.
Most Little Leaguers have as much fun, if not more, at post-game gatherings than the game itself. Take the team to a restaurant or to grab a sweet treat. Don’t make it an overly structured event. Keep it light and more impromptu. Let the kids keep their uniforms on, grass-stained pants and all, and be sure to capture the fun with photos and video – something you can share at a season-ending team party. It’s all but guaranteed that the laughs and discussions in the corner booth will have nothing to do with baseball or softball. It will be just kids being kids.
As the summer gets into full swing, try not to get caught up into the balls and strikes, or what Little Leaguer is playing where. Two years down the road, no one will remember if your son or daughter struck out or committed an error or didn’t pitch. Two decades from now, though, your Little Leaguer will remember the fun times you, as parents, helped set up.