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Special needs youth encouraged to join the Challenger Baseball program

Jefferson News
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The Jefferson Township Recreation Department is offering its baseball Little League Challenger Division for the special needs youth of the township again this spring following successful programs since 2007. 

Registration for the program is now open, and the registration fee which includes a jersey, cap, and award for the Spring 2018 team has been waived due to fundraising efforts.  Registration to play, manage, umpire, assistant coach, serve as a team parent, or become a “buddy” to a player is online through Community Pass.  Registration information flyers can be downloaded from www.jeffersontownship.net, click on “Residents” tab to “Forms Center” and then to “Recreation Department.” 

Registration for this program is only online through Community Pass so log on to https://register.communitypass.net/reg/index.cfm and if you already have an existing account, sign in or follow the prompts to set up your own personal account through the Jefferson Township community.  In either case, chose “Winter-Spring Season 2018” to register.  As there is no fee to participate, there will be no amount due.                     

If you experience difficulty in registering online, you can log on to www.jeffersontownhip.net, click on the “Form Center” link on the left side of the home page, and scroll down to the Recreation Department to find “Community Pass Online Registration Instructions” with step-by-step directions.  If you still need assistance, please contact the Recreation office at 973-663-8404 x4 or cpunturieri@jeffersontownship.net for assistance. 

The Challenger Division was established in 1989 as a separate division of Little League Baseball to enable boys and girls with physical and mental disabilities to enjoy the game of baseball along with the millions of other children who participate in this sport worldwide.  Boys and girls ages 5 - 18 (or the completion of high school) with physical or mental challenges are invited to participate.  Scott Luker, a resident of Jefferson Township, will return as director of the league.   

Over the years, The Challenger Division has removed the barriers that keep children off the baseball field and being treated just like all the other kids.  Players have the opportunity to participate in Tee Ball, Coach-Pitch, or Player-Pitch levels with the option to use the “buddy” system for assistance on the field.  Players wear the same uniforms and use the same equipment as other Little Leaguers, every player on the roster plays the entire game, and no score is kept. In addition, the program has been proven therapeutic, strengthens self-esteem, encourages teamwork and sportsmanship, and provides a new avenue of socialization. 

For information about Jefferson’s league contact Mr.  Luker directly at 973-270-8356 or e-mail him at airforceonenjllc@gmail.com You can also call the Jefferson Township Recreation office at 973-663-8404.

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