Off to a World Series?
Sweet summertime! There is nothing quite like playing ball in the 90+ degree heat and humidity and seeing an entire season cultivate into one big event! Except for of course a world series!
World Series events for fast-pitch softball are on the rise! Most take place at beach resort towns across the United States, and they bring teams together from everywhere. They are fun events, and the perfect reward for young girls and their families, as a way to end a season! I mean, what’s better after a loss – then enjoying the beach.
By now – you SHOULD have most of your plans already made as far as accommodations. If not, you may be in a bit of trouble.
But following is a quick checklist from EXPERIENCE, that you can use to help make your World Series go off without a hitch!
Make sure you QUALIFY! The majority of these tournaments require that you play in a certain number of events with their organization – or a state event. Check up on the rules NOW and make sure you qualify. If you have any doubts, reach out and call someone from the organization hosting the event.
TRADING PINS: The World Series always comes with a parade. And these parades are exciting. During the parade there will be pin trading. From experience, we can tell you that each girl should have at the bare minimum of TEN PINS each to trade! Younger siblings will also want to trade. It’s a great experience of camaraderie.
We recommend getting your pins from Dragonaire Pins! We ordered our own pins from them, and they do amazing work – are reasonably priced and fast! You can also use them for Team Banners and other personalized items. We assure you that you will be satisfied with the experience! We have worked with them with our own personal teams and have been very pleased! (You can click the picture below to contact them)
Pin Towels:If you do trading pins, you will need something for the girls to put them on! You can use towels, or back packs, or anything. We make custom towels with each players number on them (and give a discount for teams) which are a nice way to organize the pins, and display them once you get back home. You can email us for details at firstname.lastname@example.org
Communication: Make sure that you have as many text phone numbers as possible including parents, grandparents, and players so that you can keep everyone updated. Playing multiple days, means that the schedule is sure to change multiple times during the event, and tracking everyone down is nearly impossible. ATTEND THE COACHES MEETING AND TEAM MOM MEETING! They will give you great information, and most tournaments use a texting app that everybody can utilize on their phone that the directors will update with changes.
Goody Bags: Yes, you are expected to have a goody bag! Typically, you should be able to make around 13 bags for 100 or less. Go to the Dollar Store, or look online for products that you can put in there. The original idea is to represent your home state, but many teams have got away from this. You can find inexpensive drawstring bags, or use gift bags – whatever fits your budget best. Some of the ideas we have used in the past are items from our local colleges (often donated), restaurant coupons (also donated), peanuts (we are form Georgia), sunglasses for the kids, a hair bows, t-shirts, as well as some items for the beach. You could also do $5 gift cards for a local restaurant or activity that is in the town you will be in. You can do hats. This year, SIFG has water bottles (5$ each for team orders) that would be a great gift filled with bubble gum! The idea is to be creative, no matter what you do! And please remember it is better to have MORE goody bags, than not enough!
Bring EXTRA Uniforms: Just trust us on this one…. Do it. Make sure you have an extra jersey or two! (wink wink)
PLAY EVERYONE! Look, you have come this far together as a team. And your teams parents are spending a lot of money, as well as their vacation time on this event. Do not go to the event and not play a child. That’s tacky. You have come this far with your team, and this is not the event to second guess them. Don’t pick up too many players. The thought of winning a World Series, is definitely a fun idea – but the reality is that you need to win it with your team! These events are competitive and designed for FUN (and to bring in the mighty dollar)! Let’s not fool ourselves here, okay! No college recruiting is going on at these. So let’s use our heads and make it something the kids will remember fondly! The World Series is not the time to be a jerk.
Plan Ahead: If you want to plan team dinners, or team events, try and make reservations ahead of time! These towns get crazy crowded during World Series events, and it is very difficult to get large teams into any one establishment. If there is something you really want to experience, call ahead for reservations.
Be SMART! We know you want to be spend time enjoying yourself at the beach,but please – if you have a 4pm game, do not let your kids sit out and baste and burn and swim to the point of exhaustion before the game! There will be plenty of downtime during the week! There’s nothing worse than showing up at an event like this and totally stinking because the kids are too tired, not getting enough sleep, sunburned and worn! That’s just not fair to the rest of the team!
Be Early! As stated above, you can expect the town you are in to be pretty crowded! Even if the park is only 6 miles away, you need to plan for and allow for plenty of time to get there! Resort traffic is no joke!
Have fun! We pinky-swear promise, that these memories will last! Take lots of pictures. And enjoy, even the frustrating moments of a ‘group vacation!” There will come a time, and it will come faster than you realize right now, where your girls will NOT be interested in spending a week at the beach, playing ball as a team. So enjoy the experience!
What would YOU ADD to the LIST?
Don’t forget to Check out the COOLEST line of SOFTBALL SHIRTS AROUND! Many still on sale! Perfect “beach wear!” These and MANY MORE up at the STORE!