Frequently Answered Questions
What is the Paris Optimist Club?
A – It is a civic organization managed by a board of directors. Optimists serve the youth in their community with youth activities and programs. The Paris Optimist main youth activity is the baseball program.
What does the Paris Optimist Club do?
A - Our most prominent program is providing DYB recreational baseball for players from 3-14 years old in the Paris, North Lamar, Chisum and Hugo school districts. We also host Optimist Essay and Oratorical competitions for Lamar County high school students as a way for them to win prize money for college. We also help support the Red River Down Syndrome “Buddy Ball program, Head Start and CASA for kids.
How can I become more involved?
We always need volunteers! You can volunteer to help with events, such as tournaments and fundraisers, and/or help us expand our programs. We'd love to add more youth and community activities, but we have to get more volunteers willing to donate their time and talents.
Don't the baseball registration fees cover the costs of the baseball program and property maintenance and improvements?
No. The funds received from baseball player registrations cover only about 70% of the costs to have the baseball program, including field maintenance, baseball equipment, umpire pay, etc. That doesn't include administrative expenses and improvements to the facilities.
Does the city and county own and maintain the fields and facilities?
A – Charles Taylor Youth Complex & Woodall Fields is owned by the Paris Optimist Club. The club maintains and operates the facilities. Player registration fees, team sponsors, advertising sign, team sponsors, grants, Baseball Bash Gala and baseball tournaments provide the fundraising to finance the baseball program, maintenance and improvements of the facilities. The city of Paris makes an annual contribution but does not help with the maintenance.
Why are there not enough umpires on all the fields each day?
A – Umpires are recruited and trained by the Paris Optimist Umpire-in-chief. There is a shortage of sport officials all over the county. Our program especially has a problem because umpires want to be paid high school rates that our organization cannot afford. We will train anyone age 16 or older. There is an umpire meeting each Sunday during the season to review rules and baseball situations. There is also a problem with the mistreatment of umpires from coaches and fans. Umpires do not like to umpire Optimist games due to this problem.
Why are games played on Wednesday?
A – There are not enough fields to play all the scheduled games on in just four days. Parents also do not want games on Saturdays. They want Saturdays open for family activities.
Why are the fields not used for team practice?
A – There are more than 70 teams registered each year. With this many teams, it is impossible to schedule team practices. All-star teams use the fields for team practice after regular season play and due to the reduced number of fall league team, they are scheduled for team practice on the fields.
Why does the baseball program franchise with Dixie Youth Baseball?
A – Optimist baseball was started in the 1970’s for the purpose of giving all kids in the county the opportunity to play baseball (no matter their talent level). At that time the Boy’s and Girl’s Club (Boy’s Club back then) had they only baseball program in the county. They were limited in the in fields and number of kids that they could allow to play. They had player try outs and only the better players made the teams. The Breakfast Optimist, now Paris Optimist started a recreation baseball program with the pledge that any child wanting to play baseball would be put on a team. Dixie Youth Baseball is a recreation youth baseball organization which has the same goals for kids along with forming teams to have parity. Other programs allow coaches to recruit their team and the stacking of the best player talent on a few teams.
How do I become a coach?
A – Go to the contact page. According to the age you desire to coach, contact the League Agent for the age that you want to coach. A Paris Optimist members has first priority at a coaching position.
Are coaches needed?
A – Yes, coaches are needed in all ages 3 thru 14. It has become difficult to find enough coaches for all age groups. We encourage people to get involved and “Bring Out the Best in Kids” by coaching a team.