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So your team was invited to play in a Cooperstown youth baseball tournament. Now what? We'll walk you through a few things you should know before you visit the iconic town in New York!
First things first, you have to find a way to get there. Carting a full team of pre-teens across the country is never an easy task, but that doesn't mean it can't be fun. If you're only a few hours away from the area, consider driving. The mid-state New York scenery is absolutely gorgeous, with rolling hills and forests galore. Cooperstown is a sort of baseball mecca, so rest assured, there's plenty of baseball sights to take in along the way.
For anyone who lives farther away and is flying, look up group rates for your team. Many airlines offer group rates at a discount for people wanting to buy tickets in bulk. While most of the time it's more expensive, it also couldn't hurt to inquire about chartering a smaller jet for your team. Who knows? Maybe you'll find a local pilot who's also a baseball fan and is willing to fly your team at a discount!
Once you arrive in the area, the place hosting your Cooperstown youth baseball tournament should (hopefully) have transportation arranged from the airport. If not, you should be able to charter a bus or rent a few vans to go the remainder of the way to baseball bliss.
While you probably brought your team's gear, you shouldn't have to worry about equipment like baseballs or other field equipment. That should all be provided by the tournament host(s). Depending on who is hosting your tournament, they may also provide special uniforms, gloves, bats, or other equipment as part of your package deal.
For lodging, again check group rates with local hotels. The area is incredibly popular for baseball, so many hotels will offer special rates for teams looking to stay during tournaments.
In your spare time, consider visiting the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown. The museum is full of memorabilia and photos of famous baseball players throughout the years. It's a great place to learn about the history of the sport, and provides plenty of inspiration for your team.
Perhaps the most famous youth baseball tournament, the Little League World Series, doesn't actually take place in Cooperstown. Instead, it brings thousands of baseball fans to South Williamsport, PA in late summer. Although it's not near Cooperstown, it's well worth a side trip to check it out.
Last, but certainly not least, make sure your team has some trading pins on hand to trade with the other teams at your tournament. The kids love pin trading, and you don't want your team to miss out on all the fun!
This post covers just the basics when your team makes the trip to Cooperstown. Youth baseball tournaments are always a blast, and win or lose, your team will make memories that last a lifetime in Cooperstown!
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