Our Youth Activities Committee is one of our biggest that we have. It has multiple sports contests for children ages 14 years and under. The 3 sports that we have are baseball, soccer and basketball. We hold contests for these sports through out the year, giving children the chance to show their skills. Lets go over some of these contests.
Our hoop shoot is our 1 contest that a child can go and compete on a national level. It is a free throw contest that starts at the lodge level and goes all the way up to nationals in Chicago. Each child that competes, has a total of 25 chances to shoot the ball. The child who gets the most in moves on. Each of our competitions are divided by age levels and by gender. The winners of the nationals get their names inscribed on a permanent "hoop Shoot" plaque in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Our Soccer Shoot competition is done in 4 different age groups, u-8, u-10, u-12, and u-14. The u-8 children shoot at a 5 goal set ranging from 17" wide to 48" and they vary in points. Each child gets 3 chances to shoot at each goal. The most points move on. The other age groups shoot on a regulation net, divided into 7 sections. The sections range in points from 1-5. They get a total of 15 chances to score the most points. The winners of these competitions move on to a district, state, and then to a regional shoot in Maryland. They then compete against children from other states to try to be the best in the region. As of now, there is no National Shoot, but it is in the works to try and get one in the near future.
Our final sport is our Batters Up. This is a baseball and softball competition for ages 5-15. The 5-7 group hits from a tee, and all others will hit from a machine. Their age groups are split into 5 categories. All ages are that of is child as of April 30th of the current year. Girls have an option to either hit baseballs or softballs. Each child gets a chance at 10 at bats, with scoring based on the distance of the ball. The 5-7 group is based upon where the ball stops rolling, all the other groups is where the ball lands. Winner is the one with the most points and will move on to the higher competitions.
The Elks also have a 1 day Youth Sports Tournament they hold each year. the sports they have the children compete in are Golf, Tennis, and Bowling.
The week of May 1st to May 7th is proclaimed by the Grand Exalted Ruler as Youth Week, and all lodges are required to host a function dedicated to the youth of you area. Lodges host kids for dinners and award ceremonies for their accomplishments through out the year.
If you would like more information on this committee, please contact our Chairwoman Kelly Hynes @ 732-619-1646