Putnam County Softball League turns the big 3-0

Monday, March 29, 2010

GREENCASTLE -- The Putnam County Girls Softball League will be officially 30 years old this year. Donna Mahoney, Wallace Estes and E. June Tilley originally incorporated it as the Greencastle Girls Softball Association on March 19, 1980.

Barb Rader and Betty Yotes originally founded the league in 1975 because their girls didn't think it was fair the boys got to play ball and the girls didn't.

The first year they played at the boy's little league field and only had three or four teams and played on Saturdays. The following year, they moved to Blackstock because a boy's all-star team wanted to practice on Saturday.

So with a bag of broken equipment and $50 they moved. For a concession stand they sold soft drinks from a cooler.

In 1979, the league moved behind Heartland Industries and played on the three diamonds there. The diamonds were covered with agri-lime and did not have any fences, only backstops. The concession stand was a 7x14 wood shed.

Then in July 1989, the Big Walnut Sports Park opened and the league moved there. The league had no choice because Heartland was expanding and needed the ground where the fields set. So with a lot of volunteer help, they moved equipment and the concession stand.

Over the years, there have been many changes in the board, dugouts built, a lit field and a new concession stand built. The three fields are now home to between 250 and 300 girls. There are three diamonds, all fenced, and one with a scoreboard. The girls are currently split into four divisions. Pigtail-which is like T-ball, ponytail- which is coach pitch, juniors and seniors. Girls from ages 4 through 19 play on the fields. The league is open to any girl in Putnam County in the age group. All games are played at Big Walnut Sports Park just outside Greencastle.

The purpose of the league is to provide a means whereby Putnam County children, ages 4 to 19, may play the game of slow-pitch softball in a competitive, organized manner, under the instruction and supervision of qualified coaches.

It fosters the development of athletic skills, a sense of citizenship, fair play and sportsmanship, while promoting youth softball.

It will work with the youth to encourage team cooperation and spirit while advancing individual experiences.

Over the years, there have been hundreds of volunteers associated with the league. This in turn has allowed thousands of girls to play softball at a relatively small fee. Many thanks to all who have given their time and labor.

Also many thanks must go out to all of the local businesses that have supported the league over the years and have allowed it to keep the cost down.

It's been a long winter, come play slow-pitch softball; it's fun and it's recreational.

If you or anyone you know would like to play slow-pitch softball, the league can be contacted by e-mail at putnam.county.girls.softball@gmail.com or by phone at 765-653-5984.

Forms may be retrieved from the league website http://sites.google.com/site/pcgsli/ or picked up from Mason Jewelers or Alex Alleys.