Weather Forecast


Youth baseball program opens second season

The Raider Nation Youth Baseball program is having its opening day celebration this Saturday, May 7. The festivities will be held at the Veteran's Park fields, located at 2500 Millard Ave. in Hastings, starting at noon.

Events to include opening ceremonies, a home run derby, pitching competition and a Gold Glove competition. There will also be minors (ages 9 to 10) and majors (ages 11 to 12) baseball games. The concession stands will be open for this event. For more information, go to

Raider Nation Youth Baseball (RNYB) is a program that focuses on developing children at a young age to enhance their ability to play the game in a Major League type atmosphere. The goal is to prepare them for the Little League World Series, our own Hastings High School program and ultimately into Major League Baseball players.

Jim Olson and Will Hilton (former pitcher for Major League Baseball team Oakland A's farm system), are the founders of RNYB. RNYB was founded in October, 2009. RNYB 2009 board members, including Joe Larson, Auggie Obrien and others helped form what RNYB is today.

RNYB started with 66 players ranging in age from 8 to 12 years for its 2010 season. This year, the program has grown to 267 players from age 4 to 12. With the expansion of RNYB program we have brought new "baseball first" people on board like Jim Meier, Leah Pauletti, Brian Davis and Nathan Malmlov. They offer a great deal of baseball knowledge and leadership.

RNYB offers skills clinics starting in January to work on each individual aspect of play, followed by skills evaluation for team selection to ensure evenly talented teams. The program is split into four groups T Ball, Farm Ball, Minors, and Majors. Once the teams are selected, they start practice and move on to regular season games. At the end of the regular season, teams will move into the playoffs, then on to district, state and regional finals and, hopefully, all the way to the Little League World Series.

Because of the hard work and determination from Jim, Jodi, Will and many other volunteers, along with the support it has received from the community, RNYB has become successful in a short amount of time. The RNYB first-year All Star team won the 2010 American League District 2 Finals. This year, RNYB will compete in the National League.

For more information on this program, or to volunteer, contact Jim Olson, president of RNYB, through the website,

RNYB would like to thank you for your continued support!