Buddy Baseball Newsletter
March 2018
Hello Buddy Baseball Fans, 

We had a great Opening Day! It started out foggy, but that burned off by the second game of the day. 
 
Don't forget the deadline for our Buddy Scholarship for High School seniors who have played at least three seasons is Saturday, March 17th, at 6:00 pm.

The Tampa Bay Rays Mascot will be at Buddy Baseball on March 17th during some of the games.
 
On Wednesday April 4th, attorney Elizabeth Allen will be giving a special needs legal presentation at the Lightfoot Center. Additional details below.
 
Our end of season party this year will be on Saturday April 14th from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm at Pin Chasers on Armenia Avenue in Tampa. Additional details below.
 
If you have any parade beads that you would like to donate to Buddy Baseball.  Bring them to the games, and we will use them in the 4th of July parade.  


Russ Oberbroeckling
Executive Director

Opening Day
This season we have over 210 ballplayers and 53 coaches. 63 participants are new to the league. Over 180 families are participating in Buddy Baseball, representing 92 different schools.
Player Spotlight - Kimberly Shand
Kimberly Shand
Kimberly is 11 years old and this is her fourth season of Buddy Baseball. She attends Seffner Elementary and her favorite subject is Art. She loves to watch Chopped Junior, My Little Pony and Pokemon. Her favorite thing about summer is going to the beach and if she were famous it would be for being the President of the United States.
Buddy Spotlight - Jackson Woods
Jackson Woods
Jackson is a long time buddy and he attends Land O Lakes High School. He is 17 years old and he likes to make jokes and go on road trips with his friends. If he had $1000, Jackson would buy a bunch of hoodies. His favorite subject in school is science and he wants to be a doctor.  
Rookie Spotlight
Jonathan Longstreth
Jonathan Longstreth
This is Jonathan's first season with Buddy Baseball and he is 8 years old. In his very first game, he was awarded the game ball! Jonathan attends Lewis Elementary. He is the third of five kids so he has been to many of his sibling's games and now they come to his games. Jonathan "dabs" like a champ. His favorite is movie is Elf and has flown on a private jet. Jonathan's special talent is dancing and his favorite thing about summer is swimming.
Coach Spotlight
Nikki Koza-Cantwell
Nikki Koza-Cantwell
Nikki has been with Buddy Baseball for seven years. This is her 14th season. Sharks Coach Patrick Lee is the one who told her about the league and she has coached the Sharks with him ever since. Nikki is originally from Chicago and she has been in Florida for 10 years. She currently teaches third grade at Lake Magdalene in Carrollwood. Nikki just celebrated her one year wedding anniversary and her husband Ray and she has a three year old little girl named Aubrey.
Volunteer Spotlight
Thanks to the USF Alpha Phi Omega Service Fraternity, Bob Friedman, Cathy Friedman, Sherri Johnson, Jeanette Miller and Kim Mueller who helped set up for our Meet and Greet. They sorted and folded over 500 shirts and sweatshirts and helped set up tables and chairs. We really appreciate their help.
Tampa Bay Rays
Thanks to Tampa Bay Rays executives, Bill Wiener Jr. and Jennifer Tran for coming out to a game this season and supporting Buddy Baseball.  Bill is Vice President of Employee & Community Engagement and Jennifer is the Vice President of HR and Organizational Engagement.
Sarah Otteson Buddy Scholarship
For the sixth year in a row, Buddy Baseball will award scholarships to graduating buddies. We are exited to announce a new name for our scholarship. From now on we will award the Sarah Otteson Buddy Scholarship. Sarah was a buddy in our inaugural season in the Fall of 2009. She went on to be a coach while she attended USF. Sarah graduated from USF last year and moved to Ocala to begin her career with Lockheed Martin. Sarah embodied everything we look for in a buddy and a coach, a positive attitude, empathy, and a passion for helping others.
 
Thanks to the continued generosity of Dr. Howard and Donya McLeod, this year we will be awarding three graduating seniors a $1000 scholarship each. In comparison, last year we awarded three scholarships for $750 each.
 
Buddy Baseball has awarded over $10,000 in Buddy Scholarships since 2013. Buddies who are seniors in high school and who have participated in at least three seasons are eligible to apply. The application is on the Buddy Baseball website and the deadline to apply is Saturday March 17th.
 
Click on the link to apply. Good Luck!

Special Needs Trusts
On Wednesday, April 4th at 6:30 pm at the Lightfoot Center in Temple Terrace, attorney Elizabeth Allen will give a presentation on Special Needs Trusts, Social Security basic, Medicaid and ABLE accounts. This is our third time that we have offered this informative program. Feel free to invite anyone you know that may benefit from this information. Doors open at 6:00 pm
When:  Wednesday, April 4th, 6:30 pm
Where:   Lightfoot Center - (where we have the Meet and Greet)
10901 N. 56th St .
Temple Terrace , FL  33617

End of Season Party
It's hard to believe that plans are well underway for our end of season party.  Our party will feature bowling, pizza, salad, desserts, balloon artists, a face painter, raffle prizes, music and fun! 
When:  Saturday April 14th, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm
Where:  Pin Chasers
4847 N. Armenia Ave
Tampa , FL  33603  
 
There is no cost for the party, but donations are appreciated.
Please register on-line by Sunday April 8th via the link below.

Where are they now?
Chanda Harkness

Chanda was a Buddy Baseball coach for six years and was also one of our announcers. She is now living in Topeka, KS with her mother.  Chanda is teaching gifted students grades K-6 at McCarter Elementary. She truly misses Buddy Baseball as it was a big part of her life.  Chanda says, "PLAY BALL!"
 


Sponsor Spotlight
Chartered on April 21, 1927, the service club is dedicated to helping individual and community needs in the greater Tampa Bay area, with special emphasis on helping people with developmental disabilities. A perfect sponsor for us. Thanks for allowing me to be their speaker at their February meeting.

Contact Us
(813) 416-5742
Until next time...   PLAY BALL!!

Russ Oberbroeckling
Executive Director
In This Issue
Upcoming Issues
Spotlights
Buddy Scholarship Winner
End of Season Party

Buddy Baseball | (813) 416-5742 | Russ@Buddybaseball.org | http://www.buddybaseball.org
P.O. Box 290361
Temple Terrace, FL 33687-0361

501(c)(3) non profit organization