South Highline National Little League starts new 'Challenger Division' 1South Highline National Little League has started a new ‘Challenger Division’ of baseball for kids with different abilities this season, with the first game being held Saturday, June 6, at Valley Ridge Field in SeaTac. Eight firefighters from South King Fire & Rescue assisted players by being their “buddies.” “Our kids have different physical and intellectual abilities and differences but love the game of baseball,” said Michelle O’Dell. “We usually have a team of Junior Little League players assist as ‘buddies,’ who provide our kids with a ‘typical peer’ for which to learn and mimic as they play ball.” Michelle adds:

“Usually, we have other teams from our Little League Division take turns by assisting our kids, showing them how to hit, throw and catch while also coaching them to run to each base. “Our SHNLL Majors and Juniors teams have shown the most incredible loyalty and compassion to our Challengers that my heart melts just writing this. “This kind of interaction between kids with different abilities and their “typical peers” creates an opportunity for inclusion where everyone is on the same team. We’re all winning! “I would like to thank our Challenger sponsors this year, the Des Moines Waterfront Farmer’s Market, Brown’s Interiors and a private anonymous donation to help get our first year off the ground. “I would also like to send a huge thanks to SKF&R for their show of amazing support and fun spirit for our last game of the season. We even had quite the competition for our SHNLL Majors, the Dodgers, as they played the firefighters for one inning in the blazing heat! So much fun. We’re looking forward to next season. Go Challengers!!!”
Here are some photos from Saturday’s inaugural game: SKF&R w_Challengers Nate up to bat SKF&R w_Challenger 3]]>