Yay! The Trail Orioles have released their schedule and it means that, at least on some weekends, our little jewel of a ballpark will have grown up baseball.
The fact many of the dates (May 18, 25, 26, June 13, July 20, 27) hold doubleheaders also means the concession stand will be open long enough for most to partake of lunch or dinner while they are enjoying Butler Park and supporting the Orioles, who have had a pretty decent run in Western Canadian competition of late.
It is good news for local baseball that the Orioles seem to still be thriving. Ball fans have some ball, pretty good ball at that, to watch and young players have the example of the senior team towards which to strive.
Keeping ball/travel affordable for the young adults who work at and enjoy it requires, of course, some considerable amount of off-field work. A lot of it is done by the team and their attached families, but volunteers, knowledgable or not, are more than welcome.
So, contact Jim Maniago (368-9849) or Wayne Florko (368-5645) either right now or after you have checked out the schedule and realized, “I am available that day/weekend.”
Because, Butler Park, and the Orioles, are ours, and we should support them as well as we can.
•Meanwhile, although the NHL is an anti-fan mess many among us are going to watch the playoffs anyway. While they are at it, I hope they take note of the local connections of many of the players – who got where they are (into the NHL as playoff performers) at least in part through the efforts of local junior teams, coaches and organizers.
Former Nitehawk Cody Franzen is among them, allbeit with the woefull Leafs, as is former Smoke Eater Dan DeKyser of the more-supportable Detroit Red Wings. There are other KIJHL and BCHL grads throughout the pros, living some of their dreams because hockey fans here and in other small towns around the province put in their time to keep their community teams viable.
While they are considering all that, I hope some, at least, resolve to support those teams in the near and far future, keeping others’ hopes alive and maintaining among the best sources of entertainment/business, in the area.