Tag Archives: baseball

Peter Castaldo, a young Ducks fan has only been to three but to plans to not make it his last. (Laura Fallick)

Still passing time at the ballpark

Baseball has always been America’s pastime but is it still the kids’ favorite pastime? Will kids put down their electronic devices long enough to watch the game in front of them?

For a July 23rd Ducks game at Bethpage Ballpark, there were families of all ages. Kids wore baseball gloves on their hands and baseball hats on their heads. For some, this was their first Ducks game; others had been there before.  Kids had foam fingers on their hands, quackers in their mouths, and smiles on their faces.

Little League teams, Boy Scouts, and Girl Scouts attended the game. The Metro-Gnomes, a youth violinist group, played the Star-Spangled Banner. As they played, fireworks exploded overhead.


Some fans came more for the sport than for the entertainment at the park.

“My favorite thing about playing baseball is being with my friends,” said Brandon Vlacancich, 13. “It’s a fun sport to play.” Chris Mchugh, 8, of Commack, added: “My favorite thing about coming to a baseball game is the home runs.” A shortstop and pitcher for the Commack North Little League team, Chris said he also believes baseball is still America’s pastime.

Tom Hazell of East Islip, an outfielder who cited baseball’s worldwide popularity, said he really enjoys participating in the sport.

“My favorite thing about playing baseball is just playing because it’s always fun.” he said.

And Mason Holland, 10, of Cooperstown — home of the Baseball Hall of Fame — said: “My favorite thing about baseball is hitting the ball and having fun.”

Still, other fans study the professional players to improve their own skills on the diamond.

”I like coming to a Ducks game because it helps me learn baseball,” said Patrick McNelis, 13, who said he thought baseball was still popular.

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Cub scouts from Pac-12 League attend a Long Island Ducks game at Bethpage Ballpark on Wednesday, July 23, 2014. Photo by Madison Flotteron.

Take them out to the ballgame

From the moment the Metro-Gnomes, a youth violinist group from Bay Shore, did an unusual rendition of the National Anthem before Wednesday’s Ducks game, it was clearly a night for the kids.

“I’m a baseball fan myself, and I have a lot of little boys who also like baseball and I thought it would be a really fun thing to do,” Thalia Greenhalgh, teacher of the Metro-Gnomes, said. The young boys performed in front of the large audience and received huge applause.


Ten- year-old Mia Grello of Bay Shore said this was her third year with the Metro-Gnomes.  “I like playing in front of everyone because I think everyone likes to hear the violin,” she said. “You know, it’s like, it’s a nice instrument.”

Gregory Reardon, a 9-year-old Cub Scout from East Northport, said he came “to watch the Ducks crush the other team,” and that this is not his first time being at a Ducks game.  “The Ducks are gonna crush ‘em by like 10 runs,” Gregory said. Unfortunately for him, the Ducks lost, 11-3.

The Lacey Township All-Stars, a youth baseball team, came to Central Islip from New Jersey where they are representing the area in the Eastern Regional tournament.  “I’m feeling a win,” Keith Apostolos, a 14-year-old Lacey player.

Commack North’s baseball team is participating in the same tournament. “Well, they’re [the Ducks] not winning right now, but they might come back,” 12-year-old player, Timmy McHugh said.

Evan Wallis,  a 14-year-old Commack player, offered an observation that could apply to the Ducks as well as his team’s upcoming game in the tournament. “We can win if we have just enough hitting and enough defense,” he said.

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Real journalists in real cubicles: a day of real-life experiences

Newsday cubicles. Photo Cred: Hanna Da'Mes
Newsday cubicles. Photo Cred: Hanna Da’Mes

Wednesday was probably the most eventful day out of the week so far. It began with an early breakfast as usual, and then after our morning lectures, we headed over to Newsday. We were able to see rooms full of cubicles that real journalists worked in, and we learned more about the history of both journalism and Newsday. Some people from Newsday volunteered to speak to us, telling their stories and letting us ask questions. Before the field trip, we went to a broadcast set on campus and worked the various jobs included in TV news. My favorite job was probably the sound booth.

Lisa Angell and Kayla Aponte sleeping. Photo Cred: Hanna Da'Mes
Lisa Angell and Kayla Aponte sleeping. Photo Cred: Hanna Da’Mes

Afterwards, we all got back on the bus and rode to the Ducks game. We separated into our groups and tried to figure out what we were going to write our stories on. My group, which consisted of Madison Flotteron,  Yardalie “Yaya” Daniel and Dan Walocha, wanted our story to be on the high school and college students who worked in the concession stands, but we were told later that we weren’t allowed to, so we had to settle for it being on the various groups and organizations that were attending the game. We walked around for hours, interviewing people, shooting b-roll and taking pictures for our story. After a couple of hours, we decided that we needed a break, so we went to the bouncy house, and it seemed that a little time acting like a kid was a good way to relieve stress. We quickly got back to work after eating, interviewing another baseball team and shooting some more b-roll.

It was a really long day, and the exhaustion showed as we drifted to sleep on the bus ride back to the university.

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Kelly Colligan and Dan Walocha

We don’t actually work for Newsday

I had a chance to work the camera with Jacqueline. We managed to snap this quick selfie in the broadcast studio.
I had a chance to work the camera with Jacqueline. We managed to snap this quick selfie in the broadcast studio.
I can’t believe the week is already half over. Yesterday was jam-packed with ducks, cameras and good advice. The first thing we got to do was practice filming in front of a real broadcast studio. We each got our turn to play the anchor, the cameraman, floor manager, and more. Being on-camera wasn’t too much pressure, but I actually liked being at the teleprompter the most. It was really cool to see how broadcasting really works, and I loved seeing everyone laugh and have fun on camera.

Next, we visited Newsday to see the facility and talk to some journalists employed there. I was surprised at how huge the newsroom actually was. Everyone from sports writers to entertainment writers were hard at work. We even got some free t-shirts for our travels.

After visiting the newsroom, we sat down to hear some guest speakers. We listened to four or five journalists who spoke about their experiences, and how we could become better journalists. Each and every story was so inspiring and everyone seemed to genuinely love their jobs.

Following our Newsday tour, we drove straight to the Long Island Ducks game. I had never been to a Ducks game before, so I didn’t realize the amount of people that would come to support the team. Families, little league teams, couples, and loyal fans were just some of the enthusiastic fans that sat in the seats of the Bethpage Ballpark.

We got to work right away, beginning with a quick press conference with Ducks Media Relations & Broadcasting Manager Mike Polak. Everyone in the stands looked at us as we wore our green “Greene” shirts labeled “PRESS” on the back. I think the Newsday backpacks gave people a false impression that we worked for Newsday, but that was just fine to me. Once the game started, we got right to interviewing.

We interviewed about five or six fans on the rivalry between the teams, the Bridgeport Bluefish and the Ducks. It was fun filming B-roll, or background shots/action, because we got to watch all the diverse and interesting fans. The only downside was since I volunteered to film that day, I had to carry the camera, camera bag, and tripod everywhere we went.

Once we were finally finished interviewing, we left the game a little early. On the 45 minute bus ride home, we relaxed and listened to Bob Herzog talk about life as a sports writer.

After we got off the bus, we spent some time in the dorm’s recreation room, and played ping pong and pool with some of the students from the math program. Yaya and I walked up to our room like zombies, and crawled into bed to relieve ourselves of exhaustion. We woke up today again, at 6:30 a.m., and now we are blogging, at 8:37, at it again.

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