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PYAA softball taking normal approach preparing for spring season

The Picayune Youth Athletic Association’s spring softball season is now open for registration after sitting tight during the fall and winter months. Interested community members can register online or in person at Friendship Park starting Jan. 9. Registration will remain open through the month of January.

President of PYAA Softball Jeremy Guidry said team drafts will take place the first week of February. Practice sessions will follow the draft.

The current hope is for games to start on March 7 and the registration fee is $90.

Athletes from 4-years-old to 16-years-old are allowed to sign up and the number of players will then determine how many teams are formed. Guidry said there is still uncertainty regarding how the next couple of months will be affected by COVID-19, but the organization is hopeful the spring season will go on without a hitch, unlike last year’s spring season which was shut down prematurely because of the pandemic.

“It’s so hard to schedule anything with the current climate and we don’t know if stuff is going to be cancelled so we haven’t done anything this fall, but we feel confident this spring we’ll be able to play,” Guidry said.

Players, parents and organizers alike realize the pandemic won’t be gone by the time the season starts.

Bleachers have been removed from Friendship Park, where the games are played, and parents have been told to spread out along the fence line during games in order to allow for social distancing when possible. A smooth season is the best case scenario, so Guidry said the PYAA is moving forward ready to deal with whatever obstacles get in the way.

“Really we’re conducting business as usual. We’re just planning these things and if we get shut down we’ll just have to deal with that when we get to it,” Guidry said.

Guidry and the PYAA want to host the season for a variety of reasons.

Not only will the league allow athletes to get out and play the game they love in a competitive atmosphere, but the hope is being on the field will take their minds off of the ongoing pandemic for a couple hours each week.

“The last 12 months for adults have been so difficult and nobody has taken into account that the kids were out of school and they didn’t know what was going on. We’re just trying to get people some activity and a little competition, and let them have a little sense of normalcy,” Guidry said.