SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

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April 18, 2013

Peabody West to honor volunteers

“If you build it they will come.”

Ten years ago a group of volunteers worked diligently to create a new Little League playing field at Lt. Ross Memorial Park (Cy Tenney). Since the time Peabody West has been enormously successful, dominating District 15 before being moved to District 16, winning a couple of state championships, and making that great run that ended at the Little League World Series in Williamsport in 2009.

But the project was undertaken to build a field that would benefit all youngsters enrolled in the Peabody West program and its certainly paid off over the last decade.

Tomorrow, some of the core group of volunteers, who put in countless hours of work installing the back field at the complex, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch of the 2013 season at 5:30. That kicks off a jamboree to celebrate the new season that begins two days later on Sunday.

“We started the jamboree last season which was our 50th,” said Peabody West vice president Ed Silva. “It will be a fun atmosphere with all the major league teams playing two inning scrimmage games. Our senior softball teams will also participate, and we encourage all the kids from tee ball on up to come down to the park that night.

“Representatives from the Navigators and their mascot will be there giving things away, and we’ll have face painting. Our sponsors will also be on hand. We wanted to recognize some of the guys, who were there back in 2003 helping to make the new field possible. We’re all volunteers in Little League, and everything is about passing on to the next group. We try to make it better for those coming along, and back in 2003 our volunteers did a great job with the field.”

Silva said it is more important than ever to have all the fields available for youngsters to use, especially since the softball program has become so popular. One of the goals 10 years ago was to have enough fields so everybody would be able to play at the same facility.

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