December 1, 2016 Steve Cole Maine District 6 Administrator Little League International Williamsport, PA RE: District Boundary Request Dear Mr. Cole and the Little League International Charter Committee:
Our Standish Little League ("SLL") charter program is formally requesting that Little League
International ("LLI") grant us a district league boundary map adjustment in order to include and
support the youth baseball and softball players of our neighboring town, Limington, Maine. As you may know, Standish established its Little League charter in 2014 after careful consideration
and roughly a decade of partnership with the Cal Ripken Youth Baseball program. This was a difficult
decision due change scaring some people, but one that was made easier after investigating the
resources and enhanced program offerings LLI would provide in support of our League's goal and
future program vision. LLI also presented us with the opportunity to merge our program into Maine District 6, joining the
District's existing towns, in particular our neighbors Buxton and Hollis, who are already part of our
regional public school administrative district (Maine School Administrative District 6: Bonny Eagle).
This arrangement further realizes and maximizes player cohesion and continuity in order to better formulate an integrate system of players and personnel, who will eventually play together for the
middle and high school teams, within their respective school administrative district. The addition of Limington to our LL boundary map will allow us to get one step closer to work towards a bigger goal to create a Bonny Eagle Little League, consisting of Standish, Limington, Buxton, and Hollis, the towns of our school district. This will allow our kids to play together at an earlier age and build those bonds other towns in our district, state, and even our own school district sports have built for years
(Football, Basketball, and Soccer, to name a few.) In making this appeal, it's important to reiterate and emphasize that one of the most significant
reasons in support of our youth baseball and softball program's move to LLI in 2014 was in the best
interest of our young players and our school district. Like other programs, we made the determination
that our players would greatly benefit from a system that would keep them together at an early
developmental age, and thus prepare them for higher education school teams. By doing such, it offers us the ability for more team cohesion, and enhanced skill development on a continuum that will
optimize the success of these players if baseball or softball continues to be their future sport of choice. Ultimately, LLI becomes the beneficiary of these efforts.
The following represents a summary of the more compelling reasons in support of our request:
Promotes player cohesion, developmental standards, and promotes a unified team culture
while reducing player fragmentation with other school district sports programs.
Meets with an already accepted practice and prior precedent. The LLI League Charters for
both Buxton and Hollis, I believe, was similarly granted integration with District 6 from District 4
many years ago, yet both of these towns actually fall within District 4 based on LLI's current
boundary map orientation which is based on State County (York County). – see maps in the
appendix. A few of our 2016-2017 Standish Little League Baseball and Softball board as well as
volunteers are from Limington including myself and my VP of Softball Operations, as well as
our Player Agent. Our kids currently are using the School Enrollment form and have our
children go to school at the Standish schools. Unfortunately, any child who goes to school at
the Limington Elementary School (HB Emery) don't have that luxury because they are in York County and considered part of District 4. This would prevent program departure of currently interested and committed families to other,
more localized and convenient venues. Baseball and Softball is continually under pressure from competing spring/fall sporting programs, and in our locale, particularly football, soccer
and lacrosse. The current Vice President of the Limington Youth Baseball Rec program, Jay Twomey, has
worked very hard the past year to revitalize Limington's youth baseball program since it was
largely abandoned at the Minor and Major league levels in 2012 due to volunteer and
leadership apathy among parents. Since that time, Standish stepped up and worked with those families and the town of Limington to ensure children who wanted to play baseball and
softball had a program they could rely on. Likewise, some Limington children were allowed to
participate in the Buxton and Hollis charter programs with District 6 (by way of school use
waivers). However, the Limington program relaunch has largely been predicated on a promise
of continued support and integration with Standish, Buxton and Hollis. In essence, the
promotion of a Bonny Eagle youth baseball and softball programs that mimics the school
district, much like our other youth sports programs like Football, Basketball, and Soccer.
The town of Limington is largely comprised of working class families: children who do not come from households with a lot of disposable income. The average median household
income is $53,313 (2013), which is less than surrounding towns of District 6, but on par with
Cumberland County, which primarily represents towns found in District 6. In other words,
families are often forced to choose sports based on financial resources.
Given the size of the town in question (population of 3,713 in 2010), we had approximately 36
boys and girls who participated in the 2015 youth baseball and softball programs with
Standish. That equals roughly 12% of our program participants. While not statistically
significant, it illustrates a vulnerably low participation value that will be further compromised
with a District 4 orientation and participation requirement.
Limington's future holds promise: with Mr. Twomey's and Limington Youth Rec programs' efforts, the League was able to assemble 30 plus t-ball/coach pitch players in 2016. The Limington Youth Baseball Board anticipates continued growth based on recent promotional
efforts and the town's demographic profile. The United States Census Bureau (most recent of
record - 2010) reported over 500 children between the ages of 0-9. That number has likely increased since the 2015 US Census Bureau reports Limington's average family size of 3.2,
representing the third largest size as compared to surrounding communities in Maine. With
proper integration and commitment, particularly as it involves school district orientation, this will provide additional strength to the Standish, Buxton and Hollis District 6 LLI participant program. In fact, there are approximately 1,200 students at the Bonny Eagle High School
currently. Limington is physically situated on the upper, far northwestern border of the current District 4
boundary map as compared with District 6 (based on Geographic Maine Counties – maps can
be found in the appendix).
|Good morning everyone,Please allow me to introduce myself for those of you that don't know me. My name is Mike Ames and I am the Standish Little League Baseball and Softball president. My family and I also reside in the town of Limington along with a few of our hard-working board members.I am sure most of you have heard that just recently that Limington wasn't officially in the Standish Little League boundary map because it resides in York county and considered a part of Little League Maine District 4 (Waterboro, Saco, Limerick, Old Orchard Beach, etc.). This news was discovered officially last year when we used Little League's official online map to verify All Star/Tournament players for both baseball and softball. For the past couple years, we were always under the assumption that Limington was part of our LL boundaries, much like it was when we were affiliated with Cal Ripken (Baseball) and ASA (Softball) but that was proven to be incorrect. It looks like District 6 approval never made its way to Eastern Regionals and/or Little League International when Standish Baseball moved on from Cal Ripken and became Standish Little League.With all that being said, I wanted to personally reach out to all of our Limington parents and let them know the good news before we shared this news on our Facebook page. After a lot of hard work from our board of directors, the Little League Chartering committee officially APPROVED the addition of Limington to our boundary map for both baseball and softball.You may ask...what does this mean to you and your son/daughter, well it means the following:|
Please feel free to contact me or VP of Limington Youth Baseball Jay Twomey (J2ME128@yahoo.com) if you have any other questions. Thank you so much for your patience during this whole ordeal. We are so glad to help make sure the great parents and kids of Limington get to be a part of Little League and more importantly a part of the Bonny Eagle Baseball/Softball community at this age.Also please feel free to forward this to any Limington parent you think should know this info. I am using our registration info from parents who have had their children play with us in the past.Thanks again and here's to a great 2017 Baseball / Softball season.Mike Ames
- Any EXISTING Standish Little League players (league age 7 and up) from Limington are officially covered under our Little League charter/insurance and eligible of All Stars/Tournament play. Even if that child is home-schooled or going to school at H.B. Emery elementary which is located in York County
- All NEW players (league age 7 and up) from Limington are also included in the above statement
- All NEW players (league age 4 to 6) from Limington are covered under our Little League charter/insurance as part of the Limington Youth baseball program. More information to follow from the Limington Youth and Limington Town Hall regarding their registrations.
President, Standish LL Baseball and Softball