Registration has begun for the 2022 Port Arthur American Little League season.
March 23 and will have an opening day on March 26 at noon at Pioneer Park.
Openings are available for tee ball (5 years old), coach pitch (7-8 years old), minor (8-9 years old) and major (10-12 years old).
Port Arthur American Little League began 16 years ago with a vision to help underprivileged children find a productive way to spend time and release energy.
For PAALL Secretary Dwight Fobbs, the passion came from a desire to help children.
“I wanted to help underprivileged children and children whose fathers weren’t in their place,” Fobbs said. “Actually, I don’t like baseball. Kenneth Coleman, the former Port Arthur Memorial basketball coach, was helping me and he ended up tricking me into helping him.
The friendship began at church when Fobbs was on a youth program.
“It was a tutoring and mentoring program,” Fobbs said. “We would go to these children’s homes and buy them clothes for school, Christmas and everything. He inherited the league from Kenneth Lofton. I got it from Coleman. This was back when it was on Barbara Jacket Circle. We moved it to Pioneer Park 14 years ago.
It will be Fobbs last season with the organization as he hands over the reins to Carlton Alexander.
“He’ll be the spearhead once I get him on the right track,” Fobbs said of Alexander.
PAALL wanted to host the Urban Initiative, but Fobbs said Little League is not hosting Urban Initiative tournaments due to the COVID pandemic.
The league was one of 13 non-profit organizations that in November received grants from the Port Arthur News Season of Giving powered by Port Arthur LNG.
Fobbs said the league expects to have 175 participants this year.
“We’re going to have four T-ball teams, four major league teams and three minor league teams,” he said. “The entry fee is $65 for T-ball and $75 for minor league. Major league will also be $75. We will also try to field an all-star team in each division.
Alexander said he’s been in the league since his son started T-ball when he was 3 years old. He said he hopes to continue to grow the league and make baseball as big as it was when he was younger.
“I want kids to be able to learn the basics and have fun,” Alexander said. “I want them to be able to create memories.”