Host homes needed for state baseball tourney

Local officials are looking for host families to house and transport players from teams participating later this month in the Kansas Babe Ruth 14-&-Under Tournament of Cham?pions.

The tournament will be at the Tabor College Field in Hillsboro from Friday, July 25, through either Monday or Tuesday, assuming no weather delays.

Eight teams will participate. Seven teams will come as regional champions, and an eighth team will be comprised of local players.

Host families are needed for the six teams that come from farther than an hour?s drive from Hillsboro, according to Doug Sisk, Hillsboro Recreation Commission director, and Stephanie Sinclair, host-family coordinator.

?We?ve had such a good response from local sponsors and advertisers who have stepped up to help support the tournament, but we need more host families,? Sisk said.

Sinclair added, ?We?ve gotten responses so far from 12 or 13 families, which will house 36 to 40 boys. But we need maybe 15 more homes, to be on the safe side.?

Sinclair said a host family ?pretty much adopts the kids until they lose two games.?

For four teams, the second loss will happen Saturday. Two teams could still be playing as late as Tuesday morning.

Responsibilities include providing three meals a day, laundering player uniforms when necessary, providing transportation to ball games and functions and ensuring that players are at specified events on time.

The number of players assigned to one host family varies according to the sleeping accommodations available. A comfortable mattress is required for each player, whether on a bed or on the floor. Two players could sleep on a single double-sized mattress.

?Meals don?t have to be fancy?sandwiches are fine, or maybe a frozen casserole that could be heated up,? Sinclair said. ?The teams play at odd times, so you don?t necessarily have to plan a formal meal.?

Hosting will begin Thursday evening, July 23, after teams check in. Host families receive passes to the games, but are not remunerated.

?It?s a neat opportunity,? Sisk said. ?Friendships are formed through it. We?ve had families spend time with kids through these kinds of tournaments, and they?re still in contact with the kids years later.?

The need for host families is particularly challenging because of other events occurring during that weekend, including a national church convention at Tabor College as well as the Marion County Fair.

Interested households can contact Sinclair at 620-947-3835 or Sisk at 620-947-1604.

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