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.