WILLIAMSPORT, LYCOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — There are a lot of special events going on in connection with the Little League World Series.
One event, in particular, gave kids an opportunity to take a swing with some special guests.
Baseball continues to be the center of attention and right now, the city is celebrating as Williamsport welcomes the world. Earlier there was a game of Wiffleball between local kids and a retired pro baseball player.
“This is Little League Baseball Week and so, we like to celebrate all things baseball here in Williamsport during that time. So, we came up with the idea of having a little neighborhood pick-up Wiffleball game,” UPMC VP of Strategy and Business Development Patti Jackson said.
UPMC partnered with Williamsport’s Chamber of Commerce to put together the event. Kids from the River Valley Regional YMCA came out to play a little Wiffleball against local mascots and this year, Major League Baseball Hall of Fame outfielder Tim Raines.
‘It’s important to let kids know, you know, that I was a kid once. And I played Little League Baseball and it got me to the position I’m in right now,” Raines said.
Kids also had snacks and could take home an autographed baseball. Some say they loved being able to try something new with everyone from camp.
“It was fun to have all my friends here and it was really cool to be here,” Lyla Pardoe of River Valley Regional YMCA said.
Even first-timers say playing with Raines is something they’ll never forget.
“It’s an honor now that I think about it. Usually, 10-year-olds like me don’t get to do this special honor,” Micah Saiere of River Valley Regional YMCA said.
Raines says it’s all about starting young and encouraging kids to work hard towards their dreams.
“If you can get a good start, a good foundation being around good organizations, around great family, the sky’s the limit,” said Raines.
UPMC, who partnered with the Williamsport Chamber of Commerce, says they plan on continuing this event for many years to come.