by Joelle Fanger
For the last 20 years teams from all over the world converge on the Alpenrose Dairy grounds in Portland Oregon to compete for the title of Little League Softball World Series Champions.
This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and experience for these 11-13 year old girls who find out there is more to Alpenrose than just softball. The air may be filled with the aromas that only farm land can offer but the softball field and week-long events are drenched in tradition.
With sportsmanship at the forefront of the World Series, the girls have the opportunity to meet and exchange pins at the opening ceremonies and throughout the week. The day would not be complete without the ice cream social which only Alpenrose Dairy can turn into a world event. Where the Little League pledge is proudly read by both teams before play can begin and respect for one another is not only encouraged but expected. Where parents and bystanders are reminded that Alpenrose only allows positive comments from the stands; a gentle reminder to some about the power of words.
No matter how intense the game gets you can expect the Alpenrose mascot (a darling girl dressed like a cow) to come out and lead the crowd in the “chicken dance”.
Even the umpires who have traveled from all over the world to be a part of the World Series experience get in on the fun. Sometimes it takes a little encouragement from the crowd. No one is immune to Alpenrose tradition. Most forget they are being webcast around the world or being watched on ESPN2.
Alpenrose is where competition, sportsmanship, pin trading, ice cream eating, chicken dancing, and all around softball fun come together at one amazing location for one week a year. These Little League memories will last a lifetime for both players and parents and all will leave knowing what the truly important aspects Little League softball can bring to their lives.
About the Author:
Joelle Fanger is the Marketing Manager at Ringor. Joelle has played fastpitch from rec through college, and as a coach and softball mom, has a passion for the sport..