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A BRIEF HISTORY OF SHELTON NATIONAL LITTLE LEAGUE
The Shelton Little League was composed of three Little Leagues: North (Riverview Park), South (Sunnyside Field) and Central (Huntington School Field). In 1984 a process to reduce the number of leagues from three to two was implemented. The city was divided in half with the North and South becoming Shelton National Little League and Central becoming Shelton American Little League. Just prior to the merger of the North and South divisions, the Sunnyside complex consisted of a Little League field and two adult softball fields. The Little League field known as Cowey Field had a dimension of 170 feet down the foul lines. There were no paved areas around the field. The snack bar consisted of a stove, a refrigerator and a soda dispenser. The upstairs was an empty shell.
Shelton National has been blessed with dedicated volunteers, donors and sponsors. Because of the involvement and dedication of good people the following projects could be implemented. Fill was added to expand the parking area behind the buildings. Acquisition of the adjoining fields from the Parks and Recreation Dept. aided in the expansion of our programs, as well as the construction of buildings, and paving between and around the fields. Heating and air conditioning in
all our buildings was completed. Two lighted fields, bleachers, as well as fully equipped snack bars and bathroom facilities were also completed. Acquisition of field equipment, such as scoreboards and snack bar equipment has enhanced our fields. Irrigation was installed on field one.
The 1980's …
In 1984, in order to keep baseball alive during the summer months, SNLL started a program for 9 & 10 year olds that would become the Little Fellows Baseball Classic. Since its inception with 3 teams to the current 20 teams, we have strived to make this the best tournament for 9 & 10 year olds in the state. We have teams from as far away as Hartford participate in this event.
North field has benefited from some improvements during this time such as the installation of a new fence, renovation of the existing building and repairing of the dugouts. South 1 had a new batting cage installed and a brand new building added on.
The 1990's …
In the nineties, exclusive use of South 2 was acquired. The field was developed to offer softball and a Challenger program. Softball has had a slow steady growth. It is available to all girls who reside in Shelton. The Challenger program is designed for handicapped children. Children are accepted from Shelton and surrounding towns and the program is run on Saturday evenings from July to September.
The nineties also brought district three its only State Champion, that team was our own 1995 All Star Team, Shelton National.
2000 and beyond…
In the past eight years we have rebuilt North Field and renamed it Tony Mingrone Field. In 2008, Tony Mingrone celebrated his 50th year in the league. We also installed lights on this field as well as on South 2. SNLL now has 3 lighted fields and not many leagues can say that! During this time we rebuilt South 1 and acquired exclusive use of South 3. We also built an addition onto the existing South 2 building which included a brand new garage, a large storage facility and expanded office space. Irrigation was installed on South 2 and Mingrone Field in 2007.
Our softball and baseball teams have excelled in district play. Shelton National has won five consecutive District 3 Little League Baseball Titles from 2004-2008. We have also had District 3 Titles in 10-11 Baseball, 9-10 Baseball and 11-12 Softball. We are very proud of all the boys and girls! In 2008, our 11-12 All - Stars gave us all a great ride by becoming New England Champions and advancing to the Little League World Series in Williamsport. It was a summer we will never forget!
As you can see, we take great pride in our program by keeping our fields and facilities in great shape. Shelton National pays for the maintenance of its fields and buildings, including all utilities. The fundraisers, snack bar revenue, sponsorships and contributions that you have made have helped pay for the operation and maintenance of all our fields.
We thank all those who have contributed to make our program a success and look forward to a very successful future!