270 young players gather for opening

Oceanside Minor Baseball marked the official start of the season with its annual opening ceremonies at Springwood Old on Sunday

Oceanside Minor Bastball marked the official start of the season on Sunday.

Oceanside Minor Bastball marked the official start of the season on Sunday.

Oceanside Minor Baseball marked the official start of the season with its annual opening ceremonies at Springwood Old on Sunday, with the smiles and energy setting the tone for the days to come.

“It was great,” OMB president Mike Parlow said after the dust had settled. “We had 270 players at the field today — everybody from our Blastball kids aged 4-5 up to our Midget players aged 15-17 along with coaches and parents and volunteers.”

For the fourth year running OMB’s main sponsor Save-On-Foods served up free hot dogs and drinks for the kids.

Throwing out the first pitch this year was Peter Crawshaw, the parks and facilities superintendent for the City of Parksville.

Parlow, in his ninth season as a volunteer with OMB and third as president, said he initially called Crawshaw to invite him to throw the opening pitch “to thank him for all the city does for us.”

The timing couldn’t have been better it turns out as Crawshaw is retiring today (April 30) after 22 year working for the city.

Crawshaw, said Parlow, “has always looked after minor baseball really well,” and as an example pointed to the outfield fence at Springwood Old, “which was getting pretty old a couple years ago, and they decided as part of their regular maintenance to not only replace it, they also put in a warning track for the kids (so they know when they’re getting near the fence), and they put on those safety bumpers on the top all the way along.

“And more recently, when we said we were looking to put in the new bullpens, the city stepped up and assisted us with the fencing.”

GAMES ON

OMB’s house ball season runs through to the end of June, and the summer ball season to the first weekend of August.