Letter: Team’s experience at Opp tournament was great

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 12, 2017

To the City of Opp, Mayor Bracke, and the Opp Parks & Recreation Department:


Dear Friends,

We were recently visitors in your quaint little town for the Cal Ripken 8U Allstar baseball tournament. We were absolutely blown away by the hospitality and hard work of every person we met. When you think about small towns, you think about charm. Opp was the epitome of just that, and much more. Look out Luverne, for the title of Alabama’s Friendliest City may belong to another city close by…Opp, Ala.

From the moment we pulled into town, we were all impressed at how hard Mr. Willie Edwards and the Parks and Recreation Department were working to get fields in playing condition after torrential rain. Those not on the fields were working in the parking lot, making sure things were smooth, safe, and that everyone had a place to park. The work didn’t end there. Those same workers were there, day in and day out, throughout the entire length of the tournament. They were the first ones there and the last ones to leave. It rained every day, but there was not one delay. Thanks to the men and women working tirelessly to make sure everything was in perfect condition, the games could go on. For those of us who were traveling, that was a huge relief and very much appreciated!

The tournament itself was very well organized and ran smoothly each day. The umpires did a great job of keeping control of the games, and were all very respectful, consistent, and appeared to enjoy being out on the field with the boys. One of them even talked with the players in between innings and showed them a thing or two about baseball. Again, just another example of the type of people we encountered while visiting Opp.

It wasn’t just the baseball that impressed us, however, but the support of the town for this event as well. Each player was given a “goody bag” that contained not only a very nice souvenir bat, but coupons from local businesses for discounts and complimentary dinners. The players also received a free meal from the concession stand.

To a person who isn’t familiar with sports and traveling, some of these gestures may just sound like someone doing their job. However, to those of us who have been around sports for a very long time, we know that it is much more than that. Every person that worked directly or indirectly with the tournament went above and beyond the call of duty. For that, we would like to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation. The city of Opp has been well represented and has left a positive impression on us. We wanted you all to know that we did notice, and that we commend you on a job well done!



The Coaches, Players, Families & Fans of the Phenix City 8U Allstars

Phenix City, AL