NAUGATUCK — The bright smiles and happy giggles of excited children could be heard throughout the Peter J. Foley Little League Complex as the 62nd opening day ceremonies were held last Saturday under sunny skies and perfect weather.
The young baseball and softball players ran around in exuberance as the thrill of a new season offered the hope of success and memories that will last a lifetime.
Naugatuck Mayor Bob Mezzo brought it all into perspective when he asked the crowd on hand, “How many of the team coaches played at Peter J. Foley as kids?”
Hands shot up around the diamond to show the tradition of Little League baseball in the town of Naugatuck is alive and well.
Mezzo was joined by dignitaries including State Sen. Joe Crisco, Deputy Mayor Tamath Rossi, State Rep. Rosa Rebimas, Burgess Mike Ciacciarella, District III Little League Director Wendell Stieber and Peter J. Foley past president Carmen Gallo.
Peter J. Foley president Bob Dibble introduced the league board of directors and thanked the many sponsors that have helped the Little League thrive before turning it over to league secretary Barbara D’Agnone.
As each team was introduced the youngsters came charging in from the outfield to take their place around the infield amongst the cheers from the packed crowd in the grandstands.
“It’s always an honor to be here at one of the finest Little League facilities in the state,” said Crisco. “To the players, the coaches and the parents, have fun and have a very enjoyable season.”
The theme of the day among the guest speakers was to have fun and create wonderful memories and friendships that will last a lifetime.
Mezzo got the season underway throwing out the first pitch to Cardinals catcher Corey Plasky. As the pitch sailed high and wide the crowd gave the mayor a well deserved hand even though his pitch was off the mark.
The ceremonies concluded with a pair of games to help kick off the 2011 Peter J. Foley season as the crowd settled in for the all important phrase of “play ball.”