Greencastle Youth Softball Association celebrates turning 40

Friday, February 21, 2020

The Greencastle Youth Softball Association is officially 40 years old this year.

The league was originally incorporated as the Greencastle Girls Softball Association on March 19, 1980, by Donna Mahoney, Wallace Estes and E. June Tilley.

The league was originally founded by Barb Rader and Betty Yotes in 1975 so girls would have the same opportunities to play ball as boys. The first year they played at the boys’ little league field with three or four teams on Saturdays. The following year, they moved to Blackstock as a boy’s all-star team wanted to practice on Saturdays. The concession stand consisted of soft drinks from a cooler.

In 1979, the league moved behind Heartland Industries, where it played on three diamonds. The diamonds were covered with agri-lime, no fences and backstops only. The concession stand was a 7x14 wood shed.

Ten years later in July 1989, the league moved to the newly-opened Big Walnut Sports Park. Big Walnut was the only choice available, as Heartland was expanding and planned to remove the ball fields for its renovation. With the help of volunteers, the equipment and concession stand were moved to what is now their current home at Big Walnut.

In 2016, the Putnam County Girls Softball League merged with the Greencastle Girls Fastpitch Softball Club to form what is now known as the Greencastle Youth Softball Association.

Over the years, there have been many changes in the board and improvements to Big Walnut including the addition of dugouts, home run fences, a concession stand and a lighted field for night games. The three fields are now home to between 250 and 300 girls from ages 4-21.

Greencastle Youth Softball Association currently offers three programs including fastpitch, slowpitch and the 6-and-under instructional league.

Each program provides various options including T-ball and coach pitch for the younger age groups, county area travel for the fastpitch teams and locally based slowpitch.

The Greencastle Youth Softball Association also coordinates the Greencastle Middle School Fastpitch teams who play the surrounding county schools. All home games are played at Big Walnut Sports Park just outside Greencastle.

The purpose of the league is to provide a means whereby Putnam County girls aged 4-21 may play either fastpitch or slowpitch softball in a competitive, organized manner under the instruction and supervision of qualified coaches.

Softball fosters the development of athletic skills, leadership, teamwork, fair play and sportsmanship while promoting youth softball.

Hundreds of volunteers have been associated with the league through the years. This 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.

If you or anyone you know would like to play softball, visit the league’s website at, email, or follow Greencastle Youth Softball Assocation on Facebook @greencastleyouthsoftball and Instagram @greencastleyouthsoftball.