Youth Basketball League Registration Begins Today at Community Center
Sign-ups for this year's youth basketball league have begun at the College Park Community Center.
Youth basketball season is right around the corner and College Park Community Center (CPCC) is eager to get their league underway. Team registration at CPCC begins on Nov. 1 and lasts for the entire month.
The Prince George's County Department of Parks and Recreation organizes the annual youth basketball league. The league, which tips off in January, takes place at community centers located throughout the county.
The season is eight weeks long, and is broken up into six age groups with participants as young as 5 and as old as 18. There are six to eight teams per age group. Each community center hosts approximately six teams each year.
College Park Community Center had five teams last year. The 5 and 6-year-old age group did not participate because of a lack of players. The 11 and 12-year-olds however, won the league championship.
Practice, which begins in December, is held on Mondays and Wednesdays beginning at 6 p.m., with games on Saturdays from 5 to 8 in the evening.
An appetizer to league play is the CPCC Pre-Season Youth Holiday Festival Basketball Tournament. It is a 14 and under, three-day, eight-team, single-elimination tournament held yearly between Christmas and New Year.
According to first year CPCC Program Director Steve Ellis, it's not just another basketball tournament, it's a festival complete with fun, food, music and socializing.
Ellis held the same position at the Bladensburg Community Center for the past nine years and believes the impact the league has on the lives of kids is much greater than exercise.
"This league allows kids from different neighborhoods to meet each other, breakdown territorial barriers, and come together as comrades," said Ellis.
Jerry Woodfork, a counselor, front desk attendant, and former player at CPCC believes the league is great way to give kids a safe, healthy alternative to mischief and crime.
"I know a lot of the kids that otherwise would be on the street," he said. "They have sleepovers, hang with teammates, and just have fun."
The league is all-inclusive, as teams do not make roster cuts. If a team fills up, kids interested in playing are sent to another community center.
At the end of the season, an awards ceremony for the league is held, and every player who participates is awarded a medal. Larger trophies are given to the MVP, league champion, and runner-up.
For more information on sign-ups, contact Program Director Steve Ellis at 301-441-2647.
To keep up with local sports, visit www.twitter.com/patchsportsmd.