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 Home > News & Policies > July 2006

For Immediate Release
July 24, 2006

White House South Lawn Tee Ball

     Fact sheet President Attends White House Tee Ball Game
     Fact sheet White House Tee Ball


July 30, 2006 – 2:45 p.m.

Thurmont Little League Civitan Club of Frederick Challengers
Thurmont, Maryland

Dolcom Little League Indians
Shady Spring Little League Challenger Braves
Shady Spring, West Virginia

Program Participants Tee Ball Commissioner: Willie Mays, National Baseball Hall of Fame member; Former Major League Baseball Player

  • Elected to Hall of Fame by Baseball Writers in 1979 with 95% of the vote
  • He played for the Birmingham Black Barons (1948-1950), New York Giants (1951-1957), San Francisco Giants (1958-1972), New York Mets (1972-1973)
  • He played in four World Series.
  • He was named to the All-Star team 24 times.
  • Named the National League Most Valuable Player in 1954 and in 1965.
  • Received the Gold Glove award 12 years in a row: 1957-1968.
Play-by-Play Announcer: Charlie Brotman, Former Announcer for the Washington Senators Baseball Team; Inaugural Announcer since President Eishenhower’s Inauguration

Honorary First Base Coach: Al Leiter, Sports Announcer; Former Major League Baseball Player

  • Left-handed starting pitcher who played with the New York Yankees, the Florida Marlins, the Toronto Blue Jays, and the New York Mets.
  • Twice named to All-Star team
  • Branch Rickey Award winner
  • Roberto Clemente Award winner
  • Twice Top 10 Cy Young Award nominee
Honorary Third Base Coach: Dan Wilson, Former Major League Baseball Player
  • Retired last season from Seattle Mariners after 11 seasons as catcher.
  • Was the club's nominee for the 2005 Roberto Clemente Award
  • He and his wife have four children, two of whom are adopted from Bulgaria and Guatemala. They now organize a fundraiser for one of the adoption agencies – especially to help orphans who aren’t adopted.
National Anthem Singer: Nichola Kouzes, Colleyville, Texas
  • Recipient of the 2006 VSA arts (formerly Very Special Arts) Young Soloist Award, after being selected from a field of over 75 young musicians with disabilities from across the United States.
Color Guard: Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital
  • Angela M. Wilson, Brownie Troop #2996, Bowie, MD
  • Mika'elle A. Edwards, Brownie Troop #2996, Bowie, MD
  • Katherine M. Burke, Brownie Troop #1122, Annandale, VA
  • Heather Alice Arlene Demichelis, Girl Scout Troop #1632, Reston, VA
  • Kristine Hodgson-Torres, Girl Scout Troop #2288, Silver Spring, MD
  • Natasha Campbell, Girl Scout Troop #2288, Silver Spring, MD
Game Ball Presenter: Kevin Turley, Seaton School, Washington, DC

Facts about the President's White House Tee Ball Initiative

President Bush launched his White House Tee Ball Initiative to promote interest in baseball and a spirit of teamwork and service for America's youth. This is the sixth year of the President's White House Tee Ball Initiative, and this is the second game of the 2006 season. Teams are selected by Little League Baseball in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, and can be nominated online at

What is tee ball?
Tee ball is the entry sport to baseball for young players, generally four to eight years old. Tee ball develops the primary baseball skills of hitting, running, fielding, and throwing and gives children solid teamwork experience. Tee ball is played in every state and territory and in dozens of countries around the world. Participation is estimated at 2.2 million players -- 65% boys and 35% girls. Members of two teams take turns hitting a ball off a batting tee set on home plate. Batters try to get on base and advance to home; fielders try to prevent that from happening. The absence of pitching allows children to participate without the fear of being hit by a pitched ball. The players gain an understanding of the fundamental rules, which allows minimally competitive league play at all age levels.

What is the Challenger League?
Little League’s Challenger division features teams of mentally and physically disabled children. This division serves the needs of disabled children by providing the learning experience of tee ball and the camaraderie of team sports. The players range in age from 5 to 18 years old. In the Challenger Division, players are accompanied by “buddies” who offer assistance to the Challenger players when needed. This fellowship between children with disabilities and the non-disabled helps develop social skills for both groups.