NOLANVILLE — Police Chief Gary Kent remembers when he was a kid in St. Louis when he would throw a baseball around with local policemen as part of a mentoring program.
“I remember as a kid getting involved in PAL — the Police Athletic League — in St. Louis. It had a real positive impact in my life,” he said.
Several years later and now in law enforcement himself, Kent invested his own money to purchase bats, balls, gloves, helmets, even some left-handed gloves, so local children can reap the same benefits he did growing up.
Kent said he picked softball because it seemed accessible, but he mainly wants to make sure area youth are involved in positive activities.
“I always tell them, walking up and down the street is not a sport,” he said.
Youths between the ages of 7 to 14 are welcome to sign up and join the Chief of Police Softball League by July 26. Registration is free and no equipment is necessary.
While individuals can bring their own bats and gloves, Kent said he has a lot of the equipment already, including uniforms.
With inconsistent turnout in previous attempts to start a league, Kent said this year he will try to recruit players by handing out fliers and knocking on doors. He also is looking for parent coaches and other volunteers to get the whole community involved.
Once teams are formed, games will be played Saturdays at City Park in Nolanville. For information, call the Nolanville Police Department at 254-698-6346.