ISSAQUAH LITTLE LEAGUE HISTORY

Little League Baseball began with Carl Stotz of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, who was watching his nephews playing baseball in his back yard in 1938. Mr. Stotz began to think about how worthwhile it might be to bring adult baseball down to child size.\

He enlisted friends from within the community, and together they developed a plan. In 1939, they found enough youngsters and sponsors to create and outfit three teams representing a local dairy (Lycoming Dairy), a lumber company (Lundy Lumber), and pretzel manufacturer (Jumbo Pretzel). The teams met on a 60-foot diamond with scaled-down bats and uniforms. On June 6, 1939, the Lycoming Dairy and Lundy Lumber teams met in the first official Little League Baseball game.

The next day, the Williamsport Sun reported the game results with the same fanfare as its coverage of professional baseball. From there, the program blossomed. The three-team organization had grown to four by the next year, and the Little League concept began to spread to other towns. By the time the Baby Boom hit in the years following World War II, parents around the country were eager to involve their children in Little League Baseball.

In 1951 there were more than 150,000 Little League players across the nation, and Canada became the first non-U.S. nation to have a Little League program. By 1966, the program had grown to more than 1,600,000 players. In 1974, softball was added. By 1986 there were more than 2.5 million Little Leaguers worldwide. Today, millions of children on six continents are Little Leaguers.

Issaquah Little League was established in the 1971. It started out with a board of 8 people and 4 majors teams, 6 senior teams, and 100 minor league players. It covered the entire Issaquah school district and grew to over 2,300 participants by 1996. In 1997 the league split into two separate leagues with one league serving the Issaquah Plateau--now Sammamish Little League-- and another serving the lower part of Issaquah--today's Issaquah Little League.

Today the Sammamish Little League is as large as Issaquah Little League was in 1971. Issaquah Little League itself has almost 1,000 kids participating each year.

Did you ever wonder what expenses Issaquah Little League has? Well typical expenses are district and national league fees, office supplies, website and registration software fees, player scholarships, umpires, trophies, field rental fees, field maintenance costs, field port-a-potty rental, and baseball and softball uniforms & equipment for approximately 1,300 boys & girls ages 6-13. Your registration fee helps to pay for all these.

DODD FIELD HISTORY

In 1998, long time Issaquah Little League member Terry Dodd coordinated an agreement with the Issaquah School District to develop baseball fields on the swampy, blackberry-infested land between Issaquah Valley Elementary and the Issaquah Schools District Administrative building. Issaquah Little League (ILL), with the help of a grant from King County, community business contributors and local volunteers, built the two fields. Play began in the spring of 2000. ILL is fully responsible for the maintenance and administration of the fields, and in return has priority use of the fields. Issaquah Little League's Dodd Field is a truly generous and brilliant asset for our community!

Issaquah Little League's volunteers have taken great pride in maintaining and improving these terrific fields, with upgrades of sprinkler systems, fencing, bleachers, batting cages, landscaping and pathways. In 2011, synthetic turf infields were installed, ensuring more reliable play during our wet spring season, and a pathway of commemorative bricks leading from the parking lot to the fields was added.

 

ISSAQUAH LITTLE LEAGUE CURRENT and PAST PRESIDENTS

Year President
1978/1979 James Schultz
1980
1981 Dr. L Michael Scott
1982 Karen Walling
1983 Tom Whitmore
1984 Jim Heilgeist
1985 Darlene McHenry
1986 Edward Hulpuch, Jr.
1987/1988 Norman Rea
1989 Jim Russell
1990 Tony Burger
1991/1992/1993 David Matthai
1994/1995/1996 Terry Dodd
1997/1998 Tim Kimbrell
1999 Mark Jones
2000 Thomas Thompson
2001 Kim Knise
2002/2003 Brad Arbaugh
2004 Paul Wiggum
2005 Robert Gellatly
2006/2007 Peter Gaan
2008/2009 Mike Mahovlich
2010/2011/2012/2013 Tom Chan
2014/2015/2016 Brett Lowry
2017 Jason Ramsey (Current)