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Sporting Matters


The Final Countdown

with: Jamie Spencer

First and foremost, I would personally like to congratulate the 16 teams who made it all the way to Williamsport for the 2017 Little League World Series. This is my favorite time of year as our lovely backyard provides the backdrop to one of the greatest sporting events on the docket. I love the entire tournament and can't wait to take my 8-year-old over to Lamade and Volunteer for some amazing action. 
I am a huge advocate of Little League Baseball. I am a proud graduate of the program. My entire experience taught me a great deal and I can only hope the same for Jensen and his mates. Yes, I sometimes chime in with a different perspective. #usabat. But I am one of their biggest fans. They know that. These next couple of weeks puts our beautiful area on the global stage. It's a big deal folks. SO WHERE YOU FROM KID? Williamsport, PA. NEVER HEARD OF IT. It's the home of Little League Baseball. OH YEAH. I WATCH IT EVERY YEAR. THAT'S ON MY BUCKET LIST. YOU ACTUALLY LIVE THERE? Yep.
So on behalf of those who permanently reside — WELCOME TO WILLIAMSPORT BOYS AND GIRLS. I sincerely hope that you enjoy your stay. Lycoming County is the bomb and we have so much to offer. I like to tell people that we have a little something FORE everyone. TM pending. Call me if you need some advice on what to do in between games. I am here to help. #visitorsbureau. 
Things will officially kick off this Wednesday PM as we honor the teams during the Grand Slam Parade. This is a lot of fun for everyone involved. We normally pitch a tent near the Peter Herdic House and yell THROW ME SOME CANDY. I seriously thought about dressing up as my favorite “Star Wars” character and going for a walk. But I couldn't track down a float sponsor. #moreonthatlater. 
Just in case you have spent this past season on Mars — there is something very different about this year's Little League World Series. Let's go back a few months to help paint a picture. 
The Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals are scheduled to play at historic Bowman Field this Sunday. Yes. Sunday night baseball on ESPN LIVE from the 17701. The MLB Little League Classic will culminate a full day celebration that will include a few major leaguers even attending the World Series. But no tickets were available for the general public. I'm assuming MLB wanted to steal some of the Little Leaguer's thunder. 
"People will come, Steve. They'll come to Williamsport for reasons they can't even fathom. They'll exit off Route 15, not knowing for sure why. They'll arrive as innocent as children, longing for the past. ‘Of course, we won't mind if you have a look around,’ we'll say. ‘It's only twenty dollars per person.’ They'll pass over the money without even thinking; for it is money they have and peace they lack. The one constant through all these years has been baseball. America has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again. This field, this game, is a part of our past, Steve. It reminds us of all that once was good, and how it could be good again. Oh, people will come, Steve. People will most definitely come." Closed-door meeting. 
There was definitely a buzz and Bowman Field underwent a major facelift. The city of Williamsport kicked in some cash and MLB donated a hefty amount to help pick up the tab. It was bedlam. Rumors quickly spread. A hot topic of conversation. Memorial Park turned into Area 51. How will they ever pull it off? 
I'm guessing Little League's general inbox blew up with several perspectives. What do you mean there are no tickets for the general public? MLB then created the Disgruntled Residents of Lycoming County Lottery. I didn't have a prayer, but I submitted a request. I didn't win any tickets, but several of my friends did. You don't even like baseball. Stop rubbing it in. 
I can't confirm if they will shut down all of Memorial Park for next Sunday's game. I am only hearing rumors and speculation. Closing the levies? Detouring traffic? No fly drone zone? It's all a secret and no one wants to comment. I seriously reached out to everyone in my Rolodex. From County Commissioners to local Law Enforcement. No return calls or replies. I'm out. My friends at Little League haven't spoken to me since The Boys of Summer Part Deux. You can read it too on #shamelessplug. 
So I didn't make the original cut. Nor did I hit a home run with the lottery. And now I just found out my Webb Weekly press pass application was denied. What? OK. I'm screwed. But, I refuse to throw in the towel. I WILL FIND A WAY TO BE A PART OF THIS GAME. No. I am not going to anything stupid, but it helps that the local magistrate is an old friend of mine. Tune in next week sports fans. Welcome to Williamsport. Cheers.