Youth basketball signups upcoming

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 29, 2007

NATCHEZ — The Natchez Recreation Department is encouraging as many young people as they can to sign up to have some fun and make some new friends over the next couple of months.

Signups for the department’s youth basketball league is Jan. 12 and program director Wilbert Whittley is encouraging children to sign up for the program.

“There’s no winners and losers,” Whittley said. “We just want the kids to come out, play and have fun.”

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The league consists of four different divisions; the pee wee, third and fourth grade, fifth and sixth grade and seventh and eighth grade.

The league is for both boys and girls and will be co-ed unless there is enough girls to sign up to make a separate league for them, Whittley said.

Registration will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Martin Gymnasium on Homochitto Street. The registration fee is $30 for the first child and $25 for the second or third child in the same family.

Registration will continue on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m. through Jan. 24.

Following registration, a blind draft will take place on Jan. 26 and games will begin on Feb. 12. The season will run through the end of March.

All league games will be played at Martin Gymnasium.

Whittley said the league is a good way for a child to learn the basics of basketball and give them a fun thing to do in the cold winter months.

“We want everybody to come out, learn and have fun,” Whittley said. “It’s something to keep them off the street.”

Whittley said the thing the league stresses more than wins and losses is sportsmanship and character.

“It’s very much a learning league,” Whittley said. “What they really need to learn is the fundamentals and sportsmanship. We stress that (sportsmanship) to all our volunteer coaches.”

And speaking of coaches, Whittley said he is always looking for adults to get involved in the league whether it be coaching or officiating.

For more information on the league, contact Whittley at 601-445-4927 or 601-446-2762.