ROBINSON, Ill. (WTHI) – In a pregame ceremony Saturday at the Little League field adjacent to Robinson City Park, Mayor Roger Pethel presented the Robinson Little League team of 1964 with medals commemorating the team’s success on its 50th anniversary. Several of the original players, and kin to deceased players accepted the award.
Mike McSchooler, a member of the 64′ team and organizer of the 50 year anniversary, stood by as he and his teammates relived the season. An audio recording was played of game highlights from the championship game, which was held in Chicago. The event unfolded as teams prepared for a little league bout; the game which was delayed because of weather was set to begin at 2:30 Central Time.
As crews worked to prepare the field; McSchooler stood atop the field’s mound and explained the season.
“[Saturday] is our 50th year anniversary, Robinson Little League All Stars won the state title back in 1964,” said McSchooler. The task had not been replicated by any Robinson Little League time since McSchooler’s days as a player.
A small tent near the field enshrined relics from days past; among them, a newspaper clipping illustrating the team following its victory. Also on display were the team’s original trophy and several pictures detailing the post-victory journey. Knowing that Robinson Little League teams had not replicated the victory of 64′ gave McSchooler one feeling.
“Goosebumps,” he said.
Alongside McSchooler was teammate, Randy Stephens. Stephens, who also played in the 64 Championship, explained despite years past, it was still a vivid memory that stays with him.
“The memories are something that stay with you a life time,” said Stephens “How much fun it is, how much fun they are having, I wish I could still do it.”
Stephens said he now has grandsons who play, and hope that all players share the same love of the game that he has. He offered the following advice to up and coming little league players:
“You don’t have to be the best player, just go out there and have fun,” said Stephens.