PBSA marks 54th annual Opening Day Ceremony

Young players, their coaches and families participate in the big Opening Day parade.

The Perrine Baseball and Softball Association opened its new season at Cutler Bay’s Lakes by the Bay Park with the popular youth sports league’s 54th Annual Opening Day Parade and Ceremony. The event, which also featured rides for the kids, food and music, had a turnout of 800 young athletes and an overall attendance of some 2,000 people, according to PBSA president Bill Hurst.

“We were very fortunate with the forecast of 20 to 30 percent showers that it ended up being a beautiful day. To open up at that fabulous new facility that the Town of Cutler Bay’s council has created with the help of Miami-Dade County was great,” Hurst said.

“We are very fortunate to have this facility which now gives us six fields and makes it possible to have our girls softball program come back both to Franjo and Lakes by the Bay Park. It’s great having our entire family back together again, with the boys and girls. The excitement is great and for me personally I love seeing the girls back there. It reminds me of the days when my mom was coaching and my sister was playing softball.”

Attending were Jim Morris of the University of Miami; Mark Pavo from Barry University; Danny Smith, head coach of Palmetto High School; Dave and Marinka Bisceglia, the baseball and softball coaches from Coral Reef High School; Steve Rogers, the associate head coach for Southridge High School; Emil Castianos; Billy Colmer; David Thompson, one of the players who has committed to the UM and is projected to be a first round pick in Major League Baseball’s upcoming draft representing Westminister Christian School; Fred Burnside, representing South Dade High school, who has been a legend for 30 years as a coach in South Florida; ex-PBSA alumni Vinnie Chulk, Mickey Lopez and Bill Hurst, a former PBSA player and major league baseball player.

Local government officials present included Miami-Dade County Commissioner Lynda Bell, Cutler Bay Mayor Ed MacDougall, and Councilmembers Sue Ellen Loyzelle and Peggy Bell.

Softball player Jalyn Ross sung the National Anthem. Pastor Amber Massengale gave an opening prayer and blessing, and one other special ceremony was also part of the event.

“We gave our lifetime achievement award to Bill Reese, former baseball commissioner for 35 years at the park. He came back eight years ago to help coach his grandsons,” Hurst said. “It was a great day, a great event. We’d like to thank Whigham Elementary School for allowing us to use their parking facility.”

For information on joining the PBSA contact Ronnie Young, the organization’s park director, at 305-975-1732 or by email at rwyoung50@comcast.net.

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