Heartwell Members, Families, and Friends,
On behalf of our President, Tommy Pumilia, we would like to thank each one of you for making our 2014 Opening Day such a tremendous success. Highlights included our Ceremonial First Pitch and Team Parade, to a Walk-Off win for the Majors Cubs, to a combined No-Hitter thrown by the Majors Dodgers, and a host of other exciting games. This sets the tone for a great season and now we can all start enjoying some baseball with our players, families, and friends.
A special thanks to all vendors who attended our Opening Day Ceremonies; Red Eye Media, Varo Baseball, Jiffy Lube, Ms. Bling Store, Play It Again Sports, Winder Farms, Origami Owl, The Cages at Los Alamitos, and Port of Long Beach. Also another thanks to The Food Truck Connection for bringing us Tornado Potato and A Rockin Hawaiian Shaved Ice.
It takes about 4256 things (we counted) to run this league, get the season going, and put on a spectacular Opening Day. Many of these things most of you never see and it is easy to take things for granted, but I promise you, not one thing happens by "magic" or just automatically gets done. Many volunteers donate their expertise and put in long hours, way above coaching or managing, to take care of the big picture, as well as the tiniest of details, in order for everyone to enjoy the best baseball experience Heartwell can provide.
In no particular order, we would like to thank a few individuals that truly made your Opening Day such a success:
Lynette Ingram, for organizing and kicking everything off with Buddy Ball. Heartwell is honored to host a league where children with special needs are able to play and enjoy the great sport of baseball.
Steve Donini for organizing vendors and keeping all up dated with the web site. The website has been completely redesigned to accommodate your every need and to keep you informed.
Janice Allen (and Felicity!!!) for an unbelievable job with the snack bar. The snack bar now offers an upgraded menu, new beverage dispensers, and new refrigerators. It is stocked with a variety of baseball concession items ranging from soda, water, PowerAde, slushies, hotdogs, hamburgers, nachos, candy, seeds, ice cream, and special team snack offers.
Mark Jacobsen for organizing vendors and really making our sponsorship program reap huge benefits for our league and sponsors as well. Mark is responsible for coordinating and soliciting corporate sponsors, who through their generosity, help defray the costs of running a non-profit baseball league. Believe it or not, even when everyone is a volunteer, it costs a tremendous amount of money to run this baseball league for our children.
Michael Gengler for getting all the teams organized. As the league continues to grow in reputation and size, it is a Herculean effort to ensure that all players are placed in the appropriate division and on the appropriate team.
Brent Tubbs for accurately coordinating umpires and scheduling hundreds of games and practices in all divisions. Brent schedules our teams to use Heartwell Park, Del Valle Park, Bolivar Park, and Boyar Park.
Jenny Cazares, Jenny, Jenny, Jenny - Jenny single handedly rescued our uniforms to make sure all was ready in time (counting coaches, well over 600 hats and jerseys), she also organized your team pictures and other Opening Day activities. If you child received his/her uniform (which all of you should have by now) that is thanks to Jenny.
Phil Mohr for just being Phil, he has donated so much to this league, you will never meet a finer person.
And now ..... every one of us owes a very special "thank you" to Tim Hassien, Daniel Martinez, Anthony Cazares, Frank Robles, and Mike McDade. These gentlemen were at the fields until midnight Friday and returned at 6:30am Saturday; they gave you the finest baseball fields imaginable for youth baseball, and that includes fields all over SoCal. In fact, many high school fields are not in as good a shape as our fields are. 50 tons of Angel mix infield traction was put on our fields, fields and pitcher's mounds were reconstructed; laser leveled, arches cut, and infields trimmed. This was not the City of LB; this was the work of Heartwell and the gentlemen listed above. Heads up, for you T-Ballers, next in line are fields 3 and 4, some work has already started, should be completed in a few weeks. Tim, Daniel, Anthony, Frank, and Mike, thank you so much for bringing such a professional look to our fields!
The Board wishes all of you a wonderful season and to please remember that the focus is not the mangers or coaches, it's the kids and the game itself. And again, concerning Opening Day, in the words of the beloved Yankee great, Yogi Berra, "We'd like to thank you all for making this day necessary!"
Heartwell Baseball, Inc.
Board of Directors
***For you baseball aficionados – what’s the significance of the number 4256?
Pictures from Opening Day! More Pictures can be viewed under "Pictures"
on the Home Page (Opening Day 2014)