Softball season on its way

NANAIMO – Let’s turn now to minor fastball and softball. Planning and registration were underway for the upcoming season.

A couple of weeks ago in this space we mentioned that planning and registration were underway for the upcoming season of minor baseball. The same can be said for other ball organizations in town, so let’s turn now to minor fastball and softball…

President Kevin Robillard sends word that the Nanaimo Breakers Fastball Association offers a fun, inexpensive way to stay active and develop both sport and life skills. All you need is a glove and appropriate shoes, as bats, balls and uniforms are provided. Breakers Fastball is open to boys and girls ages 5-18. It provides an opportunity for young people to learn skills and develop a love of the game of fastball.

Teams for both house and competitive leagues are now being formed. As well, a Learn to Play program is offered for beginning players. Level 1 is for players ages 5-6 and level 2 is for ages 7-8. The program will run from mid-April until mid-June, with a cost of $80.

Online registration for all ages is available at nanaimobreakers.com. Two in-person registration sessions have already been held, but another is happening this evening, March 10, from 6-8 p.m. at the Oliver Woods Community Centre.

Also gearing up for the spring season ahead is the Nanaimo and District Minor Fastball Association. Brian Cornborough returns as president this year, assisted by vice-president Jim Nichol. Also on the executive are secretary Kelly Poystila, treasurer Caprice Olsthoorn and registrar Wendy Knoch. Jeremy Nickolet, Dave Poystila, Connie Larsen, Laurel Ludlow and Shannon Kenney are other directors.

To help players aged 5-18 get ready for the season, the association hosted an equipment swap last Saturday at Beban Park. Registration for the various age divisions of minor fastball has been underway since January and late fees are now in effect. However, players are still welcome to sign up until the end of March. Registration fees range from $105-145. Teams will then be finalized, with the season scheduled to open on April 11.

For the U6 (born 2010-11) group, games will be on Monday and Wednesday evenings. In the U8 (2008-09) age division, games are set for Tuesdays and Thursdays. The U10 (2006-07) division has games Mondays, Wednesday and possibly Fridays.

The U12 (2004-05) and U16 (2000-01) will play primarily on Tuesdays and Thursdays, while the U14 (2002-03) and U19 (1997-98) will take the field mainly on Mondays and Wednesdays. Some games will be played in Ladysmith and Parksville as well as in Nanaimo.

House teams and competitive teams will be formed, with rep teams known as the Nanaimo Diamonds. An ice-breaker jamboree has been planned for the weekend of April 23-24 and a year-end tournament will happen on June 18-19. As well, plans for the coming season will be discussed at the NDMFA annual general meeting March 29 at 7 p.m. at the Lions Field House at Beban Park.

As the season approaches, volunteers are still needed to coach and assist at tournaments. For more information on Nanaimo and District Minor Fastball, email registrar@nanaimofastball.org.

Whatever your sport, a reminder in closing to play your hardest, play fair, and show good sportsmanship.