OTTUMWA, IA – In a release Saturday, May 23, Ottumwa Little League Baseball says they are planning to play ball this Summer as long as final approval comes from the Governor’s office to allow Youth Summer Sports to begin. The Ottumwa Little League Board anticipates that decision to be made early next week.
In preparation of the Governor’s approval, Ottumwa Little League has re-opened their online signups for one week, ending May 30. There will also be an in-person signup Saturday, May 30, from 9:00-12:00 at the National Fields behind the Bridgeview Center. This will be the only in-person signup before teams are selected for the season. For those parents that are requesting a refund for the season, Ottumwa Little League will be issuing refunds during the in-person sign ups Saturday.
Little League President, Sam Long, says the Board will meet with Managers and Coaches in early June to select teams and prepare practice schedules, with the goal of starting practices the week of June 1.
Once rosters are finalized, the process of scheduling games will begin, so the Board please asks parents and family members to be patient as the Board and volunteers of Ottumwa Little League work to provide the best baseball experience to the children playing as they can in these uncertain times. The Board has also formulated a return-to-play plan, which may be seen on their website, ottumwalittleleague.org.
The plan outlines the Ottumwa Little League’s COVID-19 precautions including: social distancing, players having their temperature taken prior to any practice and/or game, etc. A limited number of spectators will be allowed to attend games, although the bleachers will be closed to allow players to practice social distancing as best as possible. Long told Ottumwa Radio Group that the guidelines are being reviewed by Wapello County Emergency Management officials as well as representatives with the Centers for Disease Control and may have further alterations to implement as well.
While they are preparing to resume activities June 1, barring the approval from Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, the Board does acknowledge there is the chance scheduling could have to be altered once again. They, again, ask for patience during this time as they will provide any further updates on their website as well as their Facebook page.