MILLBURN, NJ - The Millburn 12U District White baseball team is used to spending hours playing baseball during the summer days, but on Monday, June 17th, the boys took new positions – behind the plate and as coaches – to help raise money for a local charity, Missy’s Miracle, during the first annual Kickball Tournament Charity Fundraiser.
More than forty 5thand 6thgrade kids signed up to play in the tournament that was held in Taylor Park in Millburn. Four of the 12U players served as captains for the four kickball teams while the rest of the players umpired the game, calling balls and strikes behind the plate and outs in the field. The teams, named G, O, A and T, played an initial game and then the winners played each other in the championship and the losers played in a consolation game. Team O came out as champions, but competitive fun was had by all participants.
The parents of the 12U players organized the tournament to give the boys the opportunity work together at something besides baseball. Lily Lee, mother of 12U district player, Dylan Ah Now said “These boys love baseball and work hard at it all summer long, but we also want them to understand the importance of giving back to the community. Combining their passions for sports with a worthy charity like Missy’s Miracle seemed like a great opportunity. The boys came early to help set up and did a great job as coaches and umpires.”
Missy’s Miracle, a non-profit organization started by Short Hills resident, Missy Rodriguez and supported by the New Jersey Sharing Network Foundation, provides college scholarships for organ donors and transplant recipients. Each year, Missy’s Miracle awards selected New Jersey High School students up to $5,000 towards their college education. The scholarship is available in every high school in New Jersey. Over ten winners have been selected in the past five years.
The kickball tournament raised over $800 for Missy’s Miracle. “The tournament was a fun way to end the school year and I’m so grateful to these boys for selecting my charity to raise money for,” said Mrs. Rodriguez.
The Millburn 12U District White baseball team would like to thank the local businesses that donated gift cards as prizes for the winners and goody bags for all participants: Playa Bowls, Chocolate Works, Liv Breads and La Strada.
Next up for the Millburn 12U White team is the Cal Ripken Northern NJ State tournament which begins on Saturday, June 29th. The team won the District 12 tournament on Sunday, June 23, beating Mountainside 11-1.