Dan Kapanke’s La Crosse Loggers professional baseball team welcomed a number of Scouts from Hillsboro to a weekend of excitement and fun at Copeland Park, aka the Lumberyard.
Fifteen Hillsboro Scouts from Pack and Troop 83, along with parents, attended a game on Friday night, but that was only the start of an unforgettable visit, shared with about 50 others from the District.
After the Loggers won the exciting game against the Lakeshore Chinooks, 4-3, the visitors enjoyed a fireworks display after dark and the showing of an outdoor movie, entitled, not surprisingly, “Angels in the Outfield.”
With the help of the stadium lights, the Scouts then pitched a number of tents in preparation for sleeping in the Loggers outfield overnight. Not many of us can lay claim to ever doing that.
“They turned the big lights off when it was time to sleep,” we were informed by one of the Scouts. Sounds like a good idea!
That was only the beginning.
The next morning they were served a breakfast of pancakes, fruit, and juice before the highlight of the visit...a training session with actual members of the Loggers team.
The Scouts were split into various groups for baseball pointers in batting, catching, pitching, and grounders.
Scouting reports (so to speak) included the fact that the players were very helpful with good tips and also very friendly and patient with the young “rookies.”
Even Mother Nature cooperated with the event, offering only a few sprinkles during the ballgame on Friday night.
All the youngsters returned home with special memories, including one boy who reported that his favorite one was seeing the grounds crew drag the infield after the game, and stopping to do a dance to the music several times during the chore.
Kapanke, a former State Senator who still retains many friends in Hillsboro, started the Loggers franchise in La Crosse a number of years ago, and still keeps his hands in all aspects of the business. When asked if he was spotted at the event, the Sentry-Enterprise was told by a youngster, “Yeah, he was running the popcorn stand!”
Some things never change.