Hundreds attended opening day of the North Wall Little League as the youngsters kicked off the season on Saturday with their annual parade.
The little leaguers, donned their baseball uniforms, marched south down Monmouth Boulevard, then turned east down Belmar Boulevard to the Camp Evans fields for the opening ceremonies.
After Mayor Ann Marie Conte threw out the first pitch, the teams enjoyed free hot dogs, soda and games courtesy of the North Wall traveling baseball teams.
And while most parents were still finishing their coffee, by 10 a.m. Kristen Scott, an event organizer, said the kids had already gone through 300 hot dogs.
“I thought the kids would start eating them at like noon, but we went through 300 hot dogs by ten in the morning,” Scott said.
The youngsters also enjoyed spending time with their teammates and friends before their games began that afternoon.
“I really liked walking around with my friends,” Dan Hunt, 7, said. “I can’t wait to start playing.”
After a seven-year hiatus, Scott helped bring back the parade to North Wall in 2010 because parents who had once marched in it themselves wanted to give their kids the same experience, Scott said.
“I’ve got four kids involved in the program, and they had (the parade) for years. A lot of the people involved remember it and wanted to see it come back,” Scott said.
The free food, games and prizes were donated by the North Wall traveling teams as a way to pay for using the little league fields, Scott said.
“Each team adopts a responsibility, like be in charge of the garbage. And we ask them on opening day to bring something free for the kids, like games and prizes. The free day makes it a nicer event for parents and kids,” Scott said.
Everything seemed to go as planned, according to Scott, who said she was pleased with the turnout, which was in the hundreds.
“It went great. No flaws,” she said.