Gonzales awarded 2010 Dixie Youth World Series

Peter Silas Pasqua

By a unanimous vote from the board of directors of Dixie Youth Baseball, the City of Gonzales was recently awarded the 2010 Dixie Youth World Series.

“It is an honor to host a World Series,” Gonzales Mayor Johnny Berthelot said Wednesday. “We are excited about putting it on. It is a big, big opportunity for the city of Gonzales.”

Berthelot led a delegation from Gonzales to LaGrange, Ga. to submit a bid for the event. The city then hosted the organization’s directors for a visit to tour the city.

Berthelot, one of three senior board members from  Louisiana, assured the board of directors they would be treated like never before if they voted to come to Gonzales.

“We have got the facilities and community support,” Berthelot said. “We have a committee set up with over 100 volunteers right now.”

Former Gonzales Dixie Youth All-Star and LSU pitcher Greg Patterson, the chairman of the World Series Committee presented the bid along with Berthelot and director of recreation Lance Kohan.

“We will need a tremendous amount of volunteers to carry out this event along with financial support from our business community,” Patterson said. “Having two years to plan and raise funds should allow everyone time to incorporate this event into their budgets for 2010.”

Gonzales has tradition in the Dixie Youth organization,  having participated for more than 45 years, Berthelot said.

“This event will have a tremendous economic impact on our community as we actually will be hosting two age groups at one time,” Berthelot said.

The tournament will bring 11 state champions from Texas to Virginia for World Series play in both the Dixie Youth Majors (11-12) and Dixie Youth AAA (9-10) age brackets. In addition, a host team from Gonzales will also participate in both age groups.

“It brings a lot of people and money to your community,” Berthelot said of the event. “Of course, you have to do it right and get sponsors.”

Berthelot said that site requirements for the tournaments include per diem for meals and housing for teams which will be operated from a budget between $150,000 and $200,000.