Stafford County Parks, Recreation, Facilities, and Tourism (PRFT) took great pride in being a host of the 2023 Babe Ruth World Series for 14-year-olds. This esteemed international event, held annually, showcases various age groups competing for championship honors. The diligent efforts of PRFT staff was crucial in ensuring the smooth executionof this popular event. In recognition of their contributions, we are featuring them in our Staff Spotlight.
PRFT hosted the Babe Ruth World Series for the first-time in 2022, so there was familiarity with the effort required to accommodate teams, parents, and spectators. To put it in perspective, the groundwork for 2023’s games started last November. Prep work takes place on top of everyday duties and demands long hours. Pitcher’s mounds and home plates have to be constantly maintained during the year while the park is utilized by the public. Rescheduling groups and redirecting visitors to other fields is often required to make way for this maintenance, putting pressure on parks’ resources.
Once the games are underway staff work 16+ hour days. Attendees expect perfection and the fields must be game and photo ready. In between games, fields must be groomed, lines repainted, bases and mounds fixed. Banners, concessions and flags need constant attending. This is one of PRFT’s biggest event; this year’s Babe Ruth World Series included 14 teams from 3 countries and 11 states plus 300+ spectators.
PRFT staff go above and beyond to provide an enjoyable experience for participants. A lot of positive feedback is received at this time for hosting an international audience while maintaining facilities for both Series guests and Stafford residents. According to Park Supervisor Bobby Kackley and Park Maintenance staff Angie Loudin and Willie Roberts, while seeing the fields transform for the Series is gratifying, the most rewarding aspect for staff is seeing the kids excited to play and compete on their fields.
The summer crew of PRFT proved instrumental in this endeavor, offering invaluable support. Among them were baseball players themselves, gaining firsthand insight into the intricacies of organizing a competitive series, as opposed to playing in one. With the conclusion of the games, the summer crew has returned to their academic pursuits, while the staff takes a well-deserved break until the preparations recommence in November, as PRFT is set to be a host of the Babe Ruth World Series once more in 2024.
Summer crew members Derek Roseberry, Dominick Proctor and Brandon Woods