Wednesday, March 15, 2006
By ADAM LAPIERRE
News staff writer
March 4, 2006
As the infields and pitcher’s mounds start to dry out for the spring, Hood River’s youth baseball community is fast at work preparing for another season of America’s most popular sport. And among the projects in the works is the transition for 13-14-year-old boys from Babe Ruth to Junior Baseball of Oregon (JBO).
A handful of local coaches applied for Hood River to be accepted into the Tri-County JBO league. The league voted unanimously to accept Hood River, and after discussing the move with Babe Ruth organizers, parents and other coaches, the decision has been made to replace 13-14 Babe Ruth with 13-14 JBO this season.
The Tri-County league granted Hood River two JBO teams in the 13-14 year old division — a Federal team and an American team. The JBO system is divided into three levels, Federal, American and National, with Federal being for the most advanced players, American the next step down and National for the least experienced. The idea behind the three levels is to have kids play at their skill level, rather than not getting to play if they’re inexperienced, or not progress if they are advanced players.
JBO is not new to town. In the past, Hood River has had JBO tournament teams that played in a handful of tournaments in the summer alongside the Babe Ruth season. But, because they didn’t belong to a specific league, the teams were limited strictly to open tournaments.
Now that Hood River has been accepted into the Tri County League, they will have the opportunity to play a full season schedule, with a playoff tournament, against a large variety of teams in the league from the Portland/Metro area.
“I support the move because I think there’s more and consistently better competition in JBO,” said Hood River Valley High School varsity baseball coach Craig Webster. “Coming from the Portland area, I know that the better players are involved with JBO. I just like our kids to play ball, and I think they will get better competition this way.”
For those specifically involved, or with 13-14-year-old baseball players, the following information is important:
Anyone signed up for Babe Ruth this season will have their league fees reimbursed.
Tri County teams will travel to Hood River on a regular basis for league games.
Tryouts for the two teams will be at 6 p.m. this Tuesday and Thursday at the Hood River Valley High School baseball field.
Everyone will make a team. JBO is open for kids of all abilities and everyone who tries out will get on a team.
After tryouts, a board meeting will be held to discuss league play, travel, playing fields, the election of new board members and any other questions the community may have about the JBO program or the transition. The meeting time and dates will be announced when established.
For more information about JBO, visit: www.juniorbaseballoforegon.com
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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"
Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge