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D33 Tournament now named after Gary Shira, Patriot League Founder

April 10, 2024

(District 33 News Team) -- District 33 is proud to announce a name change for their annual Junior Tournament; beginning this year, it will be called the “Gary Shira Memorial Juniors Tournament”.  For those who were unfortunate to never had a chance to get to meet Gary, we asked longtime friend, Nancy Hemmings to give us a little insight to why we chose Gary Shira as the title name for this tournament.
2024 GSM Tournament
"Gary Shira originally began his volunteer service at San Carlos Little League where he served on the board for several years. During his time with the league, he became aware of the fact that players had nowhere to go once they aged out of the Majors Division. Because of Gary’s passion and desire to afford the older players the opportunity to continue with their Little League careers, Gary joined efforts with a few other parents and formally founded the Patriot Junior and Senior League in 1996, although the league had begun a few years prior.

Since that time, Gary dedicated his life to providing a safe place for these players to play baseball even if it meant the financial burden was on him. He made sure the players had what they needed and did his best to support the league over the next 25 years through not only his financial efforts but with his time. His place was in the score booth for every game announcing, keeping score and operating the scoreboard.

His dedication took him beyond the Patriot League though as he loved hosting D33 tournaments and acting as the Site Director each season. In addition, he spent many years umpiring throughout D33. Gary loved watching the players play but also loved engaging with players and parents from all of the leagues. He was known as the "friend to all” and truly was the epitome of a Little League volunteer. Gary passed away in 2021 after a short illness but his memory lives on for all those who knew and loved him."
(by Nancy Hemmings, Patriot League President)

Mid City Royals win 2024 Gary Shira Invitational

April 16, 2024

by Mark Hopkins
District 33 Junior/Senior Rep

The 10th Annual Junior Invitational Tournament (now known as the Gary Shira Memorial Juniors Tournament)  was held between April 18th and April 21st, 2024.  Eight Junior Division Teams from seven leagues played twelve games on five different baseball fields over four days.  Special thanks to Murphy Canyon LL, North Park LL, Serra Mesa LL, Sunshine LL and Patriot League for hosting this time-honored tournament.  Click here to view Bracket

More so, many thanks and compliments to the legions of volunteers who gave so freely of themselves to make the tournament such a success!  Without our field maintenance volunteers, coaches, volunteer umpires, scorekeepers, and dedicated fans, events like this cannot happen.  This tournament witnessed four fun-filled days of exciting baseball!  All of the players gave their best efforts and all played well.  

In the end, the "Royals of Mid City Little League" remained undefeated throughout the tournament and were awarded the championship banner – Congratulations Mid City Royals!

Patriot Baseball League (Jr/Sr)

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