It has been a long, weird path walked by the LaVergne baseball/softball/tball organization. From a soaring success to barely holding it together, the league is rebuilding at this time.
The primary reason for this post is to remind everyone that registration is now open by the Tennessee Strikers. From June 1 – 30th, Fall Ball costs $40 (and this includes uniforms!). On June 22 from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm,you can go to the ball park and sign up in person – or go online at www.tennesseestrikers.com to register. As I understand it, after June 30th, the fee may return to its regular rate of $80 (but it may not… we’re seeking clarification on this!).
My grandson played tball this spring. We had a late start to the season because of contract/bid wrangling. I personally believe that some of the delay wasn’t 100 percent necessary. Up to a month could have been saved had the motion to approve the contract been made a little differently, but alas. It is what it is. <– my editorial
For the purpose of background information, in the heyday as a highly successful league a local organization ran it. In either 2011 or 2012 during budget hearings, the city learned that the league – who had been collecting donations as a non-profit – did not actually have the 501(c)3 tax exempt/non-profit status. I helped research this with the Secretary of State’s office and learned they had not been a non-profit for years and years.
At the time, former Mayor Senna Mosley was told that under no circumstances could she allow that league to continue to function without having the 501(c)3 and without providing financial statements, etc. She was told it would take about two years to achieve tax-exempt status and that was too long to wait. Faced with that dilemma, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen went with another league out of Nashville that was affiliated with MLB and they ran the league for one year. They were unsuccessful so the city then hired a trained athletic director with a bachelor’s degree in sports to operate the league. She was fantastic, although there were some complainers (aren’t there always?!). I’m not really clear what happened after that but I do know there were another couple of years where a person who had been a strong volunteer was given the league and it continued to shrink.
During this spring ball season – my first experience with a child playing – my five-year old grandson played on one of two tball teams because not enough children signed up for his age group (5-6). With no experience at all playing ball, we just didn’t feel it appropriate for him to play with a 7-8 year old team. There have been hiccups with some coaches being useless (one team actually had the coach walk out on their first game for reasons I don’t know). But other coaches have been really good. There have been lots of volunteers helping out on the field and in the dugouts (and in the bleachers haha).
However there just aren’t enough kids anymore to sustain a league. If we want to continue offering this sport to our kids, then we really have to promote it to our families, our neighbors, our friends. I’d like to see the Tennessee Strikers have a fighting chance to succeed here in LaVergne so we can restore our league (headquartered at Veterans Memorial Park – the BEST facilities in the state).
Won’t you play a part and help relaunch the LaVergne league and help it again become great? It won’t happen without team work and we need you to step up, dear residents. Our kids need activities and this is one that already exists and can be a shining star. Thank you.