Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Put the kids back on the front page

My dad kept a scrap book of my childhood newspaper clippings
 from the 70s. Why can't we do the same for the kids of today?

Today’s post about the Chester vs Penn Wood baseball game not being listed in the Daily Times sports page brought out some disturbing bad habits that our youth sports programs can’t seem to shake. 
The Daily Times sports guys shared with me on Twitter that they had not received a report from either Chester or Penn Wood, therefore, it wasn’t listed. I wasn’t trying to make them work, but they said that they were going to follow up and get a report.
When I conceived the Chester Spotlight paper (I’m not associated with the 'Chester Spirit' for those of you still confused) my plan was to reserve a page for city government, churches, social organizations, calendar of events, businesses, and two pages for youth sports.
That plan never worked out on any level. I couldn’t get submissions from any of those groups and was forced to become a reporter, interviewer, writer, photographer and tasked with locating articles from other sources just to fill the pages every month. I never expected to work that hard.
The only part that really disappointed me was the lack of participation I got, and still get, from the youth sports programs in Chester.
My vision was to bring back the days of old when we used to play little league baseball or Biddy basketball one day, and read the box scores and the articles in the Daily Times the next day.
The Daily Times has long gotten away from offering space for youth sports like they used to, so I just knew that a local paper would be the answer for putting our kids back in the paper.
Imagine the impact it has on a 9 year old to see his or her picture in the paper, or reading articles about their games, or showing off their box scores. Just like it was for us, I’m sure today’s kids and their parents would love for that to happen.
Just like the Daily Times can’t be at every high school game in the county, I can't attend every youth soccer, football, baseball or basketball game. 
But if you sit in the Daily Times sports department, the phones and fax machines are abuzz all night with teams sending in their box scores. The sports writers turn those box scores into short articles or just report the scores in the next day’s paper.
But in Chester, only Terry Thomas sends me a game recap. He is the stats guy for Chester High basketball and without fail, he quickly recaps the games and emails them too me. I post them on the site as soon as I get them.
Terry and I talked about what it would take for every team to do the same thing. He said it’s no big deal and didn’t understand why it wasn’t happening either. 
As much as I get tired of asking, maybe it’s time to beg again...
To all coaches and parents involved in youth sports,
The Chester City Blog would love to receive the game results for each and every game from each and every sport played by the youth in Chester.
All you have to do is email or fax the score book pages or stat sheets and I will create a recap if you don’t. If you have team or individual photos, I will post them also. 
Our kids deserve to be recognized for their efforts.
Please email me at if your league will be participating. I would prefer not to do it for a team or two, but if that’s all I can get, it will be a good start.


  1. Stefan - there's something to be said for the youth of today being the newsmakers of tomorrow. Perhaps you could get into contact with the players on the teams. Have them push for coverage. Maybe that would get the coaches off their butts. Heaven knows the city needs more positive coverage in the DelcoSlimes!

    1. You can't push a rope. I've been down that road so many times, I quit. I learned to pick my battles and this is one of many around here that only gets more frustrating despite the upside it would bring.

      I believe the real problem is that most of the coaches are in their 20s and 30s and when they played youth sports the Daily Times was no longer convering youth sports like they were when us old-heads played. The coaches never had the exposure so they can't understand how it could work for their youth athletes.

  2. I remembered when playing for Chester Youth, they kept coverage on each division; Little League, Minor, Major and Teener league, even each division champion series was covered in the Times, miss those days.