The inaugural season of Middletown Youth Lacrosse came to a close Saturday, with a picnic attended by the families of about several dozen eager players. There was no better evidence of the season's success than the spontaneous and joyful hours that the players played pick-up lacrosse during the picnic. Many parents had to come on the field to retrieve children who couldn't stop playing.
Mayor Dan Drew came to the awards ceremony, greeting the parents and praising the efforts of everybody involved, especially Heather Iaderosa, who started the league from scratch. He read a proclamation announcing that Sunday, June 17th was Middletown Lacrosse Day in the City.
Drew praised lacrosse, saying that both his younger brothers played it. He was hopeful that it could be played at Middletown High in the near future, and told The Eye that he thought it should be the next sport added.
The league this year had 4 age groups, a clinic for 1st and 2nd graders, Bantam (3rd and 4th grade), Junior (5th and 6th), and Seniors (7th and 8th). They played games about once a week, against teams from other cities in Central Connecticut.
There seems to be something about lacrosse that instinctively appeals to kids much more than baseball does. There is constant running, obvious teamwork, using a stick to throw a ball fast and far, elements of a wild game of tag, and the helmets and pads make it safe for kids to poke at each other with sticks. My own son came off the field after what his mother viewed as a devastating loss (12-1), and gushed infectiously, "That was SO much fun!!!"
Iaderosa said that next year there would be a girls division, and that she hoped there would be enough players to have multiple Middletown teams who would play each other.
More pictures after the jump.