The Little League Network At The World Series

A daily journal of happenings in and around the 2005 Little League World Series in Williamsport, PA.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Little League Volunteers

Just like in major league baseball park, as you enter either Lamade or Volunteer stadium there are ushers that greet you and give directions to your seating area. I usually enter Lamade Stadium every year at the same place, Section 1. When I arrive at Section 1, the same two ushers seem to be there no matter the time of day, or day of the week. So today, I decided to ask them why.

According to Joe Robinson and Chris Bird, they have been coming to the World Series as Ushers since 1999. Chris is a local from South Williamsport, PA but Joe is from Russell, KY and makes the drive here each year. What you need to know though is that both Joe and Chris are volunteers and accept no money for their time. They typically start their volunteer duties at 9 AM and don't leave the park until after the last game (sometime around 10 PM) and don't take a day off. Now that's real volunteer dedication. For the 2005 Series there are 75 Ushers working as volunteers and most, like Joe, even pay their own way and lodging to be here.

But Joe and Chris aren't alone. There are hundreds of volunteers doing all kinds if different jobs in and around Little League. From Ushers, to Grounds Crews, these volunteers do what they do for the love of Little League. So, the next time you see one of these great volunteers around the park, take a moment and say thank you! Did you know that there are only about 65 paid employees at Little League Headquarters? Can you imagine putting on an event like the World Series with just these 65 people? No way!! Without these very dedicated volunteers, the tournament would not be the class event it is. THANK YOU Joe and Chris and ALL the other Little League volunteers. You make Little League proud!

12 Comments:

  • At 3:04 PM, Blogger RGMVM LL said…

    We were there last year and I have to say these guys do a great job...

     
  • At 5:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Joe also coached for over 35 years in his home town for Ashland National L.L.
    Thanks Joe

     
  • At 4:26 PM, Blogger Curing_Kids_Cancer said…

    Volunteers are what makes Little League special. And don't forget the thousands of coaches who volunteer their time and energy to teaching kids the great game of baseball!
    My wife and I have started a charitable program aimed at honoring coaches while raising money for pediatric cancer research. We're asking Little League and other youth sports teams to donate the money raised for their coach's end-of-season gift to Coaches Curing Kids's Cancer (www.curingkidscancer.org). The coach receives a great t-shirt and a certificate. The kids get the great feeling of helping fund a cure for childhood cancer. Let's salute our volunteer coaches AND make a difference.

     
  • At 9:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    There are over 500 volunteers that make the Little League World Series go every year. The most obvious of all the people at the Series is the security staff. The Security Force is paid and doesn't even factor into the volunteer count. Usher's, grounds crew, Team Uncles, and Umpires are the most obvious. I work for group called "The World Series Driver's". We have 2 main functions: 1) Transporting special guests of LLB and Teams, to from airports, bus stations, hotels, etc. 2) Operate "limosine golf carts to help transport the elderly, handicapped and disabled from their cars to the game.

    As drivers we make regular trips to the Philadelphia airport (7 hours round trip), Harrisburg airport (3 hours round trip), State College airport (2 hours round trip) and our local stops at the Williamsport airport. We transport the teams when they first arrive and take them back to the airport on their way home. The teams often schedule outside activities like visiting the local Mall or shopping plazas. Amusement parks, Reptileland, riverboat rides and trips to local restaurants. All of these activities, requires that we transport them. Over the last 2 years the trips to Penn State University has been the highlight. Last year, it was Redmond WA and this year it was Ewa Beach HI. Penn State rolls out the red carpet when these teams come in. Fran Ganter takes the boys to places that only the most rabid lion fans only dream of.

    The teams are only part of the story. Driver's transport most of LLB's guests like the Volunteer of the year, Mom of the year, good sport award recipient, Challenger award recipient, etc,etc. They all have requests to go to and from the complex, hotels and airports.

    Probably our most fun activities is "Golf cart duty", this is were we get to meet many nice people. If you ever have been to LLB World Series, you know that there are some steep climbs to get to and from the stadium. No matter what your physical condition, LLB will try to make it possible for you to attend the games. We transport anyone that has difficulty making the climb due to injury, age, disability, handicap and medical condition. God bless some of the people that still make the effort to come to these games. These people are the true testament that this is one of the most special events held anywhere. The LLB World Series offers a friendly atmosphere that won't break your pocketbook. If you come once, I guarantee that you will be back again.

    Well it's all over for another year. It sad to see it go even after hectic schedule that saw many fellow drivers up at 3:00 am getting ready to get evryone to the airports on time. We'll be counting the days down to the 06' tournament. Hope to see you there.

     
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    Dude I'm All Shook Up said Elvis. I think I'll have me another cheeseburger.

    Then I'm gonna go home, put ma dancin' suit on, munch me some uppers and freak out to that maaaaaaaaad surfing scene in Apocalypse Now on ma lcd tv .

    How cool is that boy?

    And then he just walked out of the supermarket singing. . .

    "You give me love and consolation,
    You give me strength to carry on "

    Strange day or what? :-)

     
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