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Forest Hills Little League Doubles Its Numbers With Influx of New Families

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | March 22, 2013 1:56pm

QUEENS — It's a double for the Forest Hills Little League.

The league has nearly twice the number of players that it did just a few years ago, fueled by an influx of young families, league officials said.

Over the past six years, the league, whose season starts April 6, has grown from 375 players to 660 kids ages 4 to 12 this year.

“All of our programs have grown and we are filled to capacity,” said Larry Berkowitz, league director.

The league has 50 teams that are broken up into various divisions, including Tee-ball for 5- and 6-year-olds; Lob Ball for 6- and 7-year-olds; International for 7- and 8-year-olds; Pan-continental for players 9 to 12 and Major League for kids 10 to 12.

The league is open to all children, but the majority of its players comes from the Forest Hills and Rego Park area, where Berkowitz said many young families with children have moved in recent years.

Berkowitz said that in the 1980s the league had about 700 kids, but then the demographics changed and their enrollment fell.

Now the trend has shifted again, partially fueled by many immigrant families moving to the area, Berkowitz said.

“We have a good mixture of different nationalities… Russians, Asians, Puerto Ricans,” Berkowitz said.

“Regardless of what the nationality is, they want to play the American baseball. We give them the opportunity to learn the game and they enjoy it.”

The season ends June 22.

The registration fee for the season is $175. For more information go to fhll.org or call (718) 544-2296.