HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, NJ - The bright Saturday morning sun shined down on the Hasbrouck Heights Majors field, with its newly manicured outfield, fresh white lines, and groomed infield dirt. The fences were dressed up with red, white, and blue bunting. The rainbow of teams stretched around the infield, after parading from Borough Hall with an escort from the Hasbrouck Heights Police Department. The concession was ready with coffee and bagels, and preparing to feed hungry players and families throughout the day. For some young players, it was their first opening day in t-ball. For other players, it was their final year in the Majors or softball.
Players and families were welcomed by the League president, who also acknowledged the executive board and town officials. The National Anthem was played, the ceremonial first pitch was thrown out, and the Little League oath was administered. Batter up, it’s time to play ball.
Saturday, April 4 was supposed to be the Hasbrouck Heights Little League’s Opening Day 2020. But Governor Murphy’s Executive Order to stay at home and the mandate for social distancing, the league’s official grand opening was postponed.
TAPinto wanted to celebrate this date with a “virtual” opening day. A call for photos from parents of previous opening days netted dozens of pictures. The years range from the 2019 opening day to 1998. They include teams and players along the parade route, players on the field during opening ceremonies, baseball moms, fathers and sons, fathers and daughters, ceremonial first pitches, and some opening day games.
“I know it's disappointing to the players, families and volunteers that we cannot start the 2020 HHLL Season,” said former HHLL president Ken DeBaun. “But I'm hoping with social distancing we can get the season started sooner than later!”
“It had truly been a source of joy for me every Spring to be engaged in the Little League with the coaches, parents and players,” said Gary Doran, who has been the Umpire in Chief since 1993. “I have made countless friends over the years...and the best is when young people approach me and talk about specific plays and games from their little league days.”
"Having the little league season postponed or perhaps canceled makes me sad, but also when we say ‘play ball’ again it will extra special.”
(Editor’s Note: TAPinto thanks the parents who submitted photos from their collection and looks forward to see all the players on this field later this season.)
TAPinto Hasbrouck Heights/Wood-Ridge/Teterboro is Hasbrouck Heights, Wood-Ridge and Teterboro’s free daily news source, and is the official newspaper of the Hasbrouck Heights Board of Education and Hasbrouck Heights Borough Council.
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