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Morris Plains Little League Gears Up For Spring

Sponsors sought, evaluations are coming and a 'smashing' fundraiser Sunday.

With the Super Bowl coming to New Jersey, very few people are thinking about baseball. 

But spring is closer than many realize and the folks running the Morris Plains Little League are already pushing progress for baseball and softball for 2014.  

In fact, the league is in their final week of signups, with evaluations set to be held on Sunday. 

"It's hard to think of baseball when the infields are covered in snow, but it's important for the league to know the number of kids we'll have in each level," MPLL president Tom Bergeron said. 

For the second consecutive year, Morris Plains will compete against teams from Morristown National - ensuring all games will be close to home and against other local kids. Last season, teams from Morris Plains won the championships in baseball both the majors and the AAA level - and made the finals in AAA softball. 

Bergeron, however, was quick to point out that success on the field is not how the Morris Plains board rates the program. 

"We're just thrilled that every kid who wants to play gets to play," Bergeron said. "We make sure all of our kids are placed at a skill level where they can succeed and have fun." 

And while the Little League is run by volunteers, it does have expenses. That's where sponsors come in. 

According to Bergeron, the League was thrilled to fill all of its team sponsorships last season and is pushing to do the same this year, but sponsorships aren't the only way to help.  

This spring, the league has started a donation program where local merchants can contribute to the league and then be recognized with advertisements at the Community Park fields. 

"It's a great way for local businesses to make a name for themselves in the community," Bergeron said. "And because Morris Plains plays only teams from Morristown, it's a great way for Morris Plains groups to get their brand name out to nearby customers." 

Some local businesses have gotten in on the action already, as  Smashburger on Rt. 10 in Morris Plains is holding a fundraiser from 5-9 p.m. on Sunday. 

Bergeron said patrons only need to show up and say they are there for the Morris Plains Little League and a portion of every meal purchased will be donated back to the League. 

"Thank you to everyone for the support to the upcoming 2014 season, let's play ball," Bergeron said. 

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