Little League World Series to allow limited number of fans
Little League International and president/CEO Steve Keener were weighing their options over the last few weeks regarding how to allow general admission fans into this year’s Little League World Series in South Williamsport.
After talking with medical consultants and based on guidance by the Little League International Pandemic Response Advisory Commission, the announcement was made Friday afternoon to allow 3,000 fans entry into this year’s Little League World Series.
“One of the things we wanted to do was do our very best to see how we could include general spectators in Williamsport and give people the opportunity to come here and enjoy the Little League World Series and enjoy the end of summer here,” Keener said. “We wanted to do that in a way we could minimize the potential exposure to all participants.”
The seating will be limited to the hill beyond the Lamade Stadium fence and the area beyond the outfield fence at Volunteer Stadium. The only people allowed to sit inside either stadium will be family and friends from the communities the 16 United States teams come from, and a few officials. Little League is giving 250 stadium access passes to each of the 16 teams.
“They’ll be the only people seated in the stadiums either at Volunteer Stadium or Lamade Stadium,” Keener said.
The tickets will be distributed on Little League’s website, and information regarding it can be seen at LittleLeague.org/visit.
Regional tournament locations will still be limited to just families and friends.
“All the details are there explaining how you can access the tickets, what limitations there are and other important information,” Keener said of Little League’s website.
Each individual can pre-register for a maximum of four tickets per person and each ticket is only good for that one day. Individuals who would want to attend multiple games would have to register again for different days.
Those complex access tickets will be required to enter the Little League World Series complex in South Williamsport.
The tickets will be available online two days prior to each day. For example, tickets for the first day of the series (Thursday, Aug. 19) will be made available at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 17. The tickets will not cost anything and the online request system will be at LitteLeague.org/tickets. The only way to register for tickets will be online.
Those with tickets to enter the complex will be asked to use the main entrance (Gate 3), which is located along the left-field line of Volunteer Stadium at the corner of Champions Way and Ballpark Blvd., just off Mountain Ave.
Re-entry to the complex won’t be permitted, and if anyone leaves the complex, they will not be permitted to return.
Little League put into place COVID-19 mitigation efforts for this year’s Series. Any individual who will attend who is unvaccinated is strongly encouraged to wear a mask during their visit. Vaccinated visitors may wear one at their comfort.
“Little League International, in coordination with the 2021 Little League International Pandemic Response Advisory Commission, took the department of public health and CDC guidelines into consideration when determining spectator policies for this year’s event,” Little League director of media relations Kevin Fountain said.
Visitors are also recommended to keep a six-foot distance from other visitors and all teams, and should not crowd in lines.
“I can’t underscore enough the reasons we’re doing this is to limit and minimize the exposure of participants in our World Series. This is much different than going to a professional sporting event or some other venue,” Keener said. “On our complex, it’s very often that children playing in our event are interfacing and interacting with the public on a regular basis, and we have to limit and minimize that this year.”
After having to cancel the 2020 Little League World Series and regional tournaments due to the COVID-19 pandemic last summer, Little League International wanted to do everything it could this year to provide a tournament season. In order to do that, Little League International put together its pandemic advisory commission and worked with National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado.
“With the council of our pandemic commission and great assistance from the folks at National Jewish health, we put together a mitigation plan we felt we could execute during this tournament season with our highest priority being the safety and emotional well-being of all the participants in all of our regional and World Series tournaments,” Keener said.