Milford youth basketball tryouts set for Thursday

MILFORD — Kids looking to shoot some hoops in Milford are in luck. On Thursday night, the city’s Parks and Recreation department will hold tryouts for its youth basketball league.

Everyone who tries out will be placed on a team.

“This is a recreational league, and the importance is placed on the kids being involved, learning the fundamentals and most importantly having fun,” said Brad Dennehy, the director of Milford’s Parks and Recreation department.

“Games will be every Saturday over a five-week period, with one practice a week. Usually, games last under an hour and practice is around an hour long,” he said. “Practices are due to start next week with games slated to begin January 30, through February.”

The league can accommodate boys and girls ages 6 to 14, Mr. Dennehy said.

“Right now, we have a 6 (to) 7-year-old instructional program and a league for 8- to 14-year-olds,” he said. “The kids are grouped into similar age groups and the teams are divided up in order to make the teams as fair as possible.”

To have their children included, parents must register them with the Parks and Rec Department at 422-1104.

It costs $50 to register and a T-shirt is included with participation in the program. The program is open to anyone within the age requirements who wants to play, regardless of whether they live in Milford.

At the tryouts, there will be different arrival times for different age groups. When parents register their children, they will be told at what time they need to arrive at the Boys and Girls Club at 101 Delaware Veterans Blvd., where the tryouts are being held.

Mr. Dennehy said the return of this league is not a return to normal.

“We know numbers will be reduced this year because of the pandemic. There will be nothing normal with this season,” he said. “However, we realize there is a need for recreation, and we are moving forward with trying to get some sort of a recreation program underway.”

He said pandemic safety is very important to the department and the league.

“Our aim is to educate the players and their families, so they and staff and officials are as safe as possible at all times,” Mr. Dennehy said. “We have been issued a permit by the Department of Health and we have strict guidelines which we must enforce.”

He said these include “players, coaches, staff and any spectators wearing masks at all times,” as well as “Strict cleaning requirements for equipment, reduced numbers of spectators being allowed in the gymnasium, social distancing being enforced (and) health checks being performed prior to entry of the gyms.”

Mr. Dennehy said the league also presents an opportunity for those looking to volunteer.

“We are always looking for volunteers, and if anyone wants to be involved, they can contact us at the office,” he said.