Summer won’t officially begin until Friday, but for some the season for fun in the sun has been in full swing for weeks. School wrapped up in Bryan County last month, and we’ve already been threatened by a tropical storm — a sure sign the summer months are upon us. Already the health department is warning of West Nile, which will no doubt send everyone running for the nearest can of OFF in case the bite of the mosquitoes themselves wasn’t enough to do the job. And so far, we’ve been spared a heat wave — but we’ll bite our tongue there because as we all know, it’s early yet.
But the weather and the bugs won’t likely be the only thing worth talking about this summer in Richmond Hill. For the second year in a row, there will be baseball — Little League to be exact. That’s right, Richmond Hill is to be the site for the Little League state championship tournament again. But unlike last year, which saw more than 100 10- and 11-year-olds take to the fields at Richmond Hill Park, Coastal Little League will be hosting 11- and 12-year-olds. That may not seem like a big difference, but the team that wins the Georgia crown will have a better-than-average chance at playing in the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa., in front of a worldwide audience on ESPN. Pretty cool, huh?
Aside from the bragging rights of having potential Little League World Series players pass through town, Richmond Hill will no doubt benefit from the 120 or so families who will descend upon the city for the tournament in July. The city’s tourism officials couldn’t pinpoint just how much money was spent here during last year’s tournament, but they did say the average overnight visitor usually spends about $300 locally. What’s more, the tournament is a chance for Richmond Hill to shine. Impress the 120 families that come for the tournament and maybe they’ll tell their friends about what a nice place this is to visit.
So while summer is still technically a few days away, let’s all pretend like the heat won’t try to melt us and the bugs won’t try to carry us off. Instead let’s stock up on water and repellant and be ready to root for the home team in a few weeks with fingers crossed that some Georgia boys make it to Pennsylvania in August.