Steamboat Little League starts season on blustery Saturday

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— A fierce wind blew hats off heads and even pitchers off mounds, but the Steamboat Springs Little League opened its season the right way Saturday: with the national anthem and a grill full of hot dogs.

“It was just a great day all the way around,” league President Kat Kelly said.

The league’s opening day slate featured six games and Steamboat Springs City Manager Jon Roberts, who introduced every player and coach on the field.

Kelly said there are 11 boys baseball teams playing this summer and two girls softball teams, marking the latter sport’s Little League debut in town.

Each of the softball teams is nearly full, with players ranging in age from 8 to 12 years old.

“I’m really excited,” she said. “We have girls that are still signing up.”

There wasn’t enough interest for a team of older girls, but Kelly said about five of the eight who showed interest are helping coach the younger girls.

Anyone still can sign up for the baseball or softball teams. The cost is $85. Check out www.eteamz.com/steamboat for more information.

Little League camp nears

The 2010 Rockies Skills Challenge will touch down in Steamboat Springs at 9 a.m. June 5 at Emerald Fields.

Participants in the free event will compete in baseball and softball challenges. It is open to boys and girls 6 to 13 years old and will test base running, batting and throwing skills. The winner from each age group will be able to advance to a sectional competition, and if he or she is successful there, eventually to the state competition in August.

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