It has been ten years in the making, but the Brooklyn Queens Sports Center launched its inaugural season with a colorful parade of its 18 teams at Bushwick Playground last Saturday.
“We made it! We did it! We finally pulled it out!” said Carlos Rivera, a parent and manager of the Hurricanes.
The league formed this winter after several parents who had previously been managers and coaches with the Quebradillas Baseball Organization, left to start a new league for their children.
Parents and coaches basked in the warmth of the serene summer-like morning as their children marched into Bushwick Field in full uniform, sitting in a ring around the edge of the outfield grass and the infield turf.
“We are going to show the community that we are champions on the field and champions on the field,” Pastor Ralph Ramos of Agape Christian Church (5902 Summerfield Street) in Ridgewood said during the benediction.
Robert Colon, president and founder of the BQSC, had been developing an idea for a neighborhood youth sports league for much of the past decade, but said circumstances came together for the formation of the baseball league this year.
“This is great!” Colon said. “We were hoping for a blessed day. Everybody is having fun.”
Rafael Belardo, an officer with the 83rd Precinct, grew up with Colon in Bushwick when Colon’s father was running the Bushwick Baseball League. He now sends both his sons to play in Colon’s new league.
“It’s wonderful,” Belardo said. “Parades on the first day are nice.”
The games could wait another weekend as the children were entertained by a full array of puppet shows, dance routines and other festivities as the charred smoke from foot-long hot dogs and barbecued chicken wafted above.
“This is our league. Our parents and our children are here and it’s a gorgeous day,” said Evelyn Martinez, vice president of the Brooklyn Queens Sports Center. “You couldn’t ask for a better day.”