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Discussion: California Championships

Posted Discussion
Aug. 2, 2010
JLD930
Men's 55
67 posts
California Championships
Master Collision (60 Major) entered the Cal State Championships thinking there would be a number of teams participating.It is very disappointing to find that the NorCal Merchants are the only other team entered in this group. Are there any other 60+ teams still considering this tournament?
Aug. 2, 2010
60 going on 40
Men's 60
25 posts
That's too bad. You may want to check these guys out for future tournaments. Nice fiedls and weather www.socalssa.com
Aug. 3, 2010
pushin60
Men's 60
63 posts
JLD,

Iím sorry you entered this tournament in good faith and ended up finding only one other team in your division. I enjoyed playing against your team in Reno, and congratulate you on your victory. Iím assuming that your team is sponsored, by the number of travel tournaments that you seem to enter. If not, then I envy your ability to afford the travel costs. Most of the teams that are in the Cal Cup (about 85%) are from around Sacramento or within an hour and a half drive. In fact, itís worth noting that there are almost as many teams entered from Colorado/Nevada (5) as from Southern California (7). Iíd venture to guess that a lot of the guys that are playing will be staying in their own beds and not paying for one, and certainly not flying in. Maybe all the So Cal teams are sick of having to play in Nor Cal all the time. I can tell you this, the next time that SSUSA holds a significant tournament in Southern California, other than a local qualifier, will be the FIRST time in at least the last ten years! Maybe if SSUSA, just once in a while, moves this tournament farther south into Central California (Fresno, where they used to hold it, or Bakersfield), or into So Cal (any one of a million places!) they will experience a better turnout Thanks for listening.
Aug. 3, 2010
Omar Khayyam
994 posts
Even with the large number of total teams, there are always some brackets that will be unbalanced. Look at the 70s: one major plus; one major; three AAA; and one AA. I guess that will be three champions without playing a single comparable team?! At least those AAA teams will be able to have some competition.

I also see that the draft schedule isn't posted yet. Kind of late with only a week to go.
Aug. 3, 2010
JLD930
Men's 55
67 posts
Ken,
Thank you for your thoughts. Actually we have a sponsor but they do not pay any of our travel expenses. We play in 6-9 tourneys per year and all require travel as there are no tournaments in Colorado. Unfortunately this situation is becoming a major issue. There were only 3 teams in 60M in Lacey and now 2 in this tourney. If something isn't done soon the number of teams that travel will be reduced even more; especially Major and Major +. Seems that there are too many associations, too many levels, too many age brackets. There are enough teams to have some great tournaments. There needs to be a better communications vehicle for managers of teams in the various groups to communicate with each other to let them no which tourneys they are attending. I find very little satisfaction in winning a 2,3 or 4 team tournament. Just my thoughts.
Aug. 3, 2010
Tate22
Men's 55
259 posts
Jack:
You hit the nail on the head about having too many levels. We are a So CA team that stopped going to the Western Nationals and the Cal Cup because as a M+ team we were(a)not going to have anyone in our division, or (b)were going to have to give runs to men our own age. With three skill levels, that problem would be alleviated. Anybody that says 4 skill levels are necessary is just trying to dilute the competition pool to their benefit. Pushin 60 - you are so right about no big tournaments in SO CA. Maybe SO CAL SSA will help change that.
JMHO
Don Newhard
Nighthawks 55 M+
Aug. 3, 2010
JLD930
Men's 55
67 posts
Don;
You are right on. Fran mentioned they may look at SoCal for the Cal Championships next year. Perhaps that would increase the participation. We are willing to travel for good competition but spending thousands of dollars as a team for a two or three team tourney is crazy. Hopefully the powers that be will do something to help this situation. I say that understanding it is not an easy fix but something really needs to be done.
Jack
Aug. 3, 2010
Duke
Men's 60
708 posts
SSUSA is looking at So Cal or halfway around the Fresno area.

Andy Smith,
Double Edge,
60 Major
Aug. 4, 2010
Brock
Men's 65
46 posts
We are working with the City of Aurora close to Denver to land the Western Nationals next year. With United having a hub in Denver and Southwest flying from many locations to Denver, it's easy and fairly reasonable to get in and out. Aurora has a 12 field complex that is an excellent playing facility. Because, as Jack says, we have to travel tyo all of these tournaments that it gets to be expensive for the players. I also play on Master Collision and am disappointed that only one 60 major team is in this tournament. If we're successful in landing the 2011 Western Nationals, we hope all teams that know the Scrap Iron Club and the competitive teams that we have will remember that when putting next year's schedule together and will give the Denver area a try.
Greg Broeckelman - Scrap Iron Club President and member of the Master Collision 60s and Scrap Iron Redux 65 teams
Aug. 4, 2010
Jawood
Men's 50
794 posts
Too many divisions and/or age groups equal not enough teams to fill them. When will they realize this and do something about it?
Aug. 4, 2010
taits
Men's 65
4357 posts
Fresno only has the one good complex with 5 fields.
All other fields are not really good playing conditions, open fields and spread out all over the place.
anything in Fresno would have to be separate weekends if a good turn out happened.
I played in the last one ssusa put on in Fresno. There are more teams now than back then all over.
Would be nice.
Aug. 4, 2010
Duke
Men's 60
708 posts
Speaking with Frannie, the Cal Cup will be held in Fresno for 2011. Hopefully, that will get more teams to attend. Maybe Southern California for 2012? Or 2011? LOL! For sure, it will not be up in Northern California next year.

Andy Smith,
Double Edge,
60 Major

Aug. 4, 2010
E4/E6
Men's 60
850 posts
Andy, thats barily a concession for us in So Cal. Fresno is what 150 from Sacto? And still 350 from us.
I often wonder why we are kicked around in So Cal by SSUSA. We had the Spring Worlds in Palm Springs for a couple of years until Mesquite made an offer SSUSA couldnt resist.
I wont hold my breath for the Cal Cup to come to us.
Aug. 4, 2010
mad dog
Men's 60
3932 posts
fresno,distance from
sacto = 200 miles
san diego = 250 miles
bay area = 200 miles
lax = less than 200 miles
so E4/E6, fresno is really in the middle for most.
i use to live in hanford just south of fresno,and traveled to sacto visit my lady.
Aug. 4, 2010
Omar Khayyam
994 posts
E4/E6, what is the state of softball in So Cal? You've heard that the Northern California Senior Softball Association has 100+ teams. How many are there in the south? How many associations? Would love to have more opportunities to play SoCal guys in Palm Springs...Fresno...Bakersfield...etc. Wherever there are adequate fields.
Aug. 4, 2010
THECAT
59 posts
Ok, look at the new tourneys that are being held in Temecula, Hemet and maybe Lake Elsinore. The new complex in Lake Elsinore may be up in 2011. The complex in Temecula is about a 30 minute drive to the Hemet Complexes. Almost the same senerio as Woodland and Davis.
To those of you who are traveling to these complexes this year, you are well aware of fields. It would be easy to say they are very nice. The weather is good. The officiating has been very good. The balls fly.
The only thing I would suggest to the Temecula group is to try real hard to get room rates that would entice groups to travel. Some of the tourneys are now qualifiers for the SSUSA and should show the SSUSA that this is a very nice place to hold the Cal Cup.
Aug. 4, 2010
Smokey20
Men's 55
102 posts
Played 2003 ASA 40 Nationals in Aurora at that complex. Is top notch and right by the airport.
Aug. 5, 2010
taits
Men's 65
4357 posts
The Cat,
You are correct.
Aug. 5, 2010
Webbie25
Men's 60
1972 posts
Brock-if you get it together in Denver, I know our Albuquerque Desperados would consider it strongly. Besides, my son lives in Aurora so would be great for us. Not enough tourneys in our neck of the woods.
Mark Weber
Albuquerque Desperados 55
Aug. 5, 2010
E4/E6
Men's 60
850 posts
Omar I believe there are 70+ So Cal based teams. As far as associations, we have the SCSSA and SSUSA Qualifiers.
Question still remains, why dont we have a major here?
As far as the Cal Cup goes, I have asked every year for the past 3, when will the Cup come to So Cal. Afterall, it isnt called the NorCal Cup.
So Cal supports the SSUSA as much or more then any other locale, in doing so we have to travel to every tournament they sponsor.

Maddog, you need to look closer at a map. Fresno is 160 miles or less from Sacto and 375 from San Diego. My point being Fresno is still far closer and is still more closely associated as a Norcal city.
At last glance there were only two (2) 60AAA teams from So Cal, out of nine (9) teams registered to date. Its the same year in and year out. Care to guess why?
Aug. 5, 2010
mad dog
Men's 60
3932 posts
i was 200 even to my gals house in satco(she lived in the south area and i drove it twice a month) from hanford,i was 30 miles south of fresno,so maybe,but more like 180
(sac to fresno) for the fields you would have to use.i have drove to SD (i used to play with a 50 team from there)from hanford and it was 250-260 miles for me to get there.yes i agree it does put more of a burden on you socal'ers to always have to go north,maybe lancaster would be a good place to meet.
when they(ssusa) divided cali up,fresno was the dividing line for north/south.

don't know about the 60AAA only having 2 in socal.
Aug. 6, 2010
taits
Men's 65
4357 posts
When I ran 5 tourneys in Fresburg I found it easier to get southern teams to go north than the northern teams to go south... Reason was the TD's, or ncssa wanted to keep the money on their hands, not to get teams to play different ones. That said Fresno\Clovis has at least 18 hotels, Inns, lodges within 15-20 miles of the regional park, three within a half mile of the airport, Basically across the street.
Easy commute to park but for food while playing, it is 3 miles from park to fast food types or Dennys.
Sad thing is that they have the facility to use there for a big concession for food which they originally had,
Bring shade, not many trees to get it from.
Fences are 300'.
Fields usually kept up pretty good there. TD will need to be sure because our league park in bad area of town is only mowed once a month now.
Google Fresno regional park location @ Jensen & West Ave. Long drive into actual park from that X road. Just hope too the park doesn't charge... Last one I went to there they did not if your playing.
Aug. 9, 2010
Marv19
Men's 60
435 posts
First off ... Do you believe the weather this last weekend in Temecula!! Seriously... 2 back to back Chamber of Commerce days. 80 and crystal clear.

OK guys here's the deal. In Temecula you have to deal with the city bureaucrats. Believe me Don and I have tried. There is no other venue in Temecula that the city will allow tournaments on. We checked out Lake Elsinore and there are no fields there except two hard ball fields and one new park that has two fields and no fences. So if you know something let me know and I will surely follow up on it. There are at least two other Parks in Temecula that have excellent playing fields. Not like Birsdsall but better than most. We had a meeting with the powers in Temecula and they said no outside tournaments except Birdsall Park.

Now as for the Rooms in Temecula. When we formed this organization we obtained preferential room rates at 4 hotels. But the hotels will only hold blocks of rooms for up to 2 weeks before the event. Some will only do 30 days before. We advertised them on our web site before our Feb and June tournaments and the rooms all had to be turned back in. The area is a tourist destination and the Hotels don't seem to care as they sell out Spring / Summer without much trouble. Unfortunately the 4 hotels I worked with aren't anxious to do it again so I sort of gave up. So to that end I have just listed all the hotels and motels in the area on the web site. If you travel a little way out of town you can usually find something. Lake Elsinore for example is only 12 miles north. Add 4 miles and your at the park

The facility in Hemet is going to be the best for having a lot of teams because there are 8 brand new sodded enclosed fields. 5 at 300' and 3 at 325'. Plus free RV parking over night on site. (no Hookups) This facility was in the paper this morning as they hosted the national ASA girls fast pitch tournament this last month and last weekend. Rave reviews for the Park from ASA. We are looking forward to our first tournament there and the 3 subsequent ones this year. We have booked Jan and July so far along with our repeat dates for 2011. That will take us to 6 tournaments at the Diamond Valley in Hemet for 2011. Pictures of both facilities are on the web site.

As far as a major tournament go you may want to consider the "Southern California Championships" held at Diamond Valley Sport Complex in Dec 4-5. Its going to be a Major Event. Book your reservation as this tournament will sell out fast. It is a ring tournament but unlike other ring tournaments you actually get a "paid for" ring when you win. 14 rings per team. (Info on the site)

Now as for other Venues? Don and I formed the SCSSA with one of our goals to put on a first class experience that you have never had at a regional event. One of those was to give you guys the best playing conditions available at reasonable prices. With that concept in mind we want our venues to be up to the standards of Birdsall (Temecula) and Diamond Valley (Hemet). Venues are not that easy to come by and most all municipalities require deposits and or applications filled out and submitted once during the previous year. Presently we are preparing to renew Temecula as it is due in September. We are seeking dates in San Clement and Fountain Valley as these venues fit our standards. We are looking to add some spring dates. Spring dates are the hardest to get because youth sports take priority over us old farts. But we are trying... believe me we are trying. Those of you that have played in our tournaments so far ... Thank You so much... We really mean it. There is no SCSSA without you. I hope you come back as often as you can. Those of that haven't played yet please come and try us out. I'm reasonably sure you wont regret it. I hope this has given you a little more information that will be helpful when choosing where you go in the future. BTW Don't forget about friday Golf!
Thanx

Marv
www.socalssa.com
Aug. 9, 2010
curveball
Men's 65
400 posts
Marv you are correcvt on the weather, it was a perfect weekend for softball.
Do you know who designed that park? Rest rooms so far away there is no way to use them during a game; having guys pee in the garbage can in the dugout is rather gross. Need a portable potty or 2 by the fields.
NO WATER! Mid 80's and no water in the dugouts. Not healthy for seniors for sure. Designer dropped the ball on those 2 items for sure.
And, you are also correct about lodging. I heard one guy say it was $399 for Sat at the casino across the street. That won't work.
I stayed in the casino RV park @ $96 for 2 nights. It was very nice though, a bit spendy for an RV space, but very convienient. They also have free spaces without hookups if you choose.
As for spring tournaments, take a look at Palm Springs as a venue. Weather will be super and you'll have fields available. There would be a ton of rooms at decent rates. And, wives like something to do other than watch ball 24/7. Keeping them happy is paramount. Location works well for those traveling from the AZ area also.
Aug. 9, 2010
Marv19
Men's 60
435 posts
Hi Curve Ball Back! As is the case most often things don't always seem as they are. I have no idea who designed the park and I must agree it is a little weird. I think it has to do with the 6 soccer fields and basketball courts on the other side of the Restrooms. But if you think about it the heads are very near the outfield fence on #2 and #3. Since the fields are symmetrical the parking lot at the end of fields #1 and #4 would be the same walking distance. AND though it would be down hill to pee it would be up hill to get back. But as I said before dealing with City bureaucrats is difficult. We asked them to place two porta potties in the parking lot and they refused to do it. So its not like we didn't hear you guys.

Now the water: We discussed it a long time ago. It's a liability issue. This is why Donnie has asked you guys, through the managers, to bring water. We have heard stories of guys before leaving the dugout after a game on a hot day dunking their sweaty towel in the Ice water container in the dugout then leaving all the bacteria for the next team. We simply can not risk anyone getting sick as a result of our perceived negligence. We enjoy a good relationship with the insurance carrier now. So PLEASE bring your own water and don't be too hard on us because we may be saving someone a trip to the doctors in the long run.

Now as far as the ladies are concerned there is plenty to do in this town. If they haven't found "Old Town" you are saving some credit card expense. There is a bunch ladies can do there. It is full of shops, restaurants and history of old California. There is a Mall about 7 miles from the park and the big one, at least for me, is the wineries. I could see a few of them going out there. There are 27 wineries and ALL offer wine tasting. Also remember for sports entertainment we have one of the best minor league ball parks in the nation in Lake Elsinore. $21,000,000. (thats 6 zeros) They were in town last Sat too. There are 2 Casinos near by. One across the street and one down the hill about 10 mi (Pala) The girls could play golf if one is so inclined on Sat. There are 7 excellent golf courses in a 10 mile radius. From public to semi private. Red Hawk is a rock throw away (public) and Journey is across the street for the deep pocket golfer. $250 per round. The restaurants are second to none in the area. So if the lady is confined to the Ball Park all day take her out and show her a nice dinner after. But be sure to shower first :O)

Palm Springs in the spring is debatable. It is the heart of their tourist season. Remember if the weather is great we're not the only ones that would want to be there. But your point is well taken.

YES I have lived here since there was only one stop light so you can ask me anything.
Aug. 10, 2010
softballerK1
Men's 65
29 posts
Marv 19...loved your comment about the water. We played in the Eastern Nationals this past weekend and one of the park personnel was clearing out one of the water coolers, bitching and moaning the whole time that some guy had turned his ankle and didn't have any ice. So, what did he do? He took the top off the cooler and stuck his foot in it!! How gross is that? Then the whole team was complaining because they needed a new cooler of water. By the way, there was ice available all over the park. All he had to do was ask around.
Aug. 10, 2010
OTE24
Men's 65
122 posts
Marv,
Thanks to you and Donnie for a well run tourney. The staff,umpires and grounds crew made it a fun weekend.
Reworking the fields after every two game was a nice touch. We were still on time for all of our games. Our schedule will have us back in Oct. and Dec. Thanks again,you're doing great.
John Sadler
Doulbe Edge 60
Aug. 10, 2010
Marv19
Men's 60
435 posts
Thanks John.
Too bad your team wont be back any sooner. After last weekend your in third place only 3 points back for the $500 grand prize. But I know schedules are difficult to change sometimes. Good luck Marv
Aug. 12, 2010
curveball
Men's 65
400 posts
Marv, you are correct again, there are a lot of things to do in the Temecula area for the wives. I was just stating there is also numerous things for the ladies to do in PS if you are looking to add another tourney. There seems to be plenty of rooms available in the spring months in the 6 PS area cities. Park Dept will work with whomever wants to put a tourney in PS, they want the room taxes. Weather is a good factor.
Your story on sweaty towels in the water bucket, and SoftballerK1's about the foot in the water bucket@ the Eastern Nationals gives new meaning to "lowlife" "inconsiderate" and "poor example of a human being". I find it hard to believe anyone would let a team mate do that kind of a stunt. That's the bottom of the barrel. I'd think a 55 gal. drum of Woop Ass getting opened would be in order.
Aug. 13, 2010
Marv19
Men's 60
435 posts
Unfortunately Curve Ball it only takes one bad apple to to spoil the barrel. Pun intended. I'm sure there are a few more adjectives that I dare not post here but the bottom line is we can't take the chance. One other note. I had to laugh out loud later about the discussion re: the out houses. I miss understood the desired placement. If we could get porta potties they would have to be in the parking lot down the hill. Were you thinking they would be in the middle of the diamonds? There are no delivery trucks allowed up there if so. They deliver those things on a 30 foot flat bed.

Now as for Palm Springs. Do you know of any facilities (not Big League Dreams) on a par with Temecula and Hemet? I know of only one park out by the airport that has 4 fields but you have to walk a half of a mile between the pairs of fields. I suppose you could do it but I get people complaining about a 300 foot walk to pee. Let us know if you do as we are submitting applications now for our 2011 season.

Marv
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