Greece Little League – 70 Years Old!

A logo of a baseball

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It’s a warm day in April 1954. You throw on your Keds, grab your glove and bat, then jump on your bike and listen to the ticking of baseball cards clipped to your spokes as you ride away. Fast forward 70 years to April 2024. You put on your Nike Trouts, grab your baseball bag and your cellphone, then jump in the family SUV and head out for the day. So much has changed in the world over 70 years, but one thing that is still the same, the love for baseball.

Greece Little League, Inc. (GLL) remains a constant in developing young and eager baseball and softball players. In 1954, it started as Barnard Little League and soon after changed the name to Greece Little League. For 30 years kids from Charlotte and Greece played on fields at Barnard Park, Carter Park, English Road Park now known as Basil Marella Park, and the Dorsey field at The Legion Post #486. In the 1980s, the population of GLL players grew with the expansion of eligible Hilton players. The League started using the Greece schools’ baseball fields as well.

A group of baseball players posing for a photo

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Barnard Little League team photo C1955
(provided by Greece Town Historian)
A group of young boys in baseball uniforms

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Greece Little League team photo 1989
(provided by Krysten Kaanana)
Greece Little League field on Latta Road.
Greece Little League field on Latta Road. (photo by Bill Sauers)

Every Saturday those fields were full of cheers and homeruns. Moms and Dads volunteered their time to make sure the players had the best experience. They gave out uniforms, kept score, coached, and even drove from park to park with a grill to make hotdogs for the hungry crowd. As the 1990s approached the GLL families and Board knew they needed to find a place to call home for Little League. Through tireless fundraising and gracious community donors, Greece Little League broke ground on their permanent home at 3641 Latta Road.

The new home for GLL brought new, exciting changes. In 1992, two new divisions were added, Softball and the Challengers Baseball for Special Needs Players. Softball was a strong addition to the GLL program and has won several D4 championships. The Challengers program has grown into a Junior and Senior division that hosts over 75 players every season. You can also catch our Challengers playing every summer at Innovative Field, hosted by the Rochester Red Wings. In 2012 the Greece Tornadoes Travel teams were formed and are still going strong. And in 2012, GLL opened the concession stand in the center of the 42-acre complex. Long gone are the days of hot dogs on a grill out of the shed. Now you can enjoy an elaborate menu while watching a game from any of the 13 fields.

A group of kids sitting on a bench

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Game day at Latta Road
(photo by Krysten Kaanana)

With all these changes, there are some things that are still the same. As a not-for-profit league 501(c)(3), GLL has always depended on volunteers and sponsors. Gene and Diane Noga have dedicated over 44 years to GLL. You can still find them at the fields cooking great food and watching games. They have watched players become parents, coaching like their dads before them. They have seen thousands of players grow to play school ball for Greece and Hilton. Do you want to be part of the GLL and baseball history? Grab your glove and come play!

For More information about Greece Little League head over to their website and either sponsor the league, coach teams, umpire for the league or even if your kids or grandkids want to play sign them up and let them enjoy the game of baseball, challenger, or softball for ages 4 to16.

Website: https://www.greecelittleleague.org/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/greecelittleleague/

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Krysten Kaanana
Krysten Kaanana
President of Greece Little League at Greece Little League | Website | + posts

Krysten Kaanana a lifelong resident of Greece has been coaching Greece Little League for nine years and has been President of the League since 2023.