Blackmon sisters revive Lowndes little leagues

Published 5:31 pm Thursday, July 13, 2023

Little league football and cheerleading returned to Lowndes County this summer for a full season which began with registration on July 15 and a first practice on July 19. The Blackmon sisters, Loretta and Cassandra, were born and raised in Lowndes County and started the little league team through their non-profit, Hope’s Youth Development Services Inc. 

The sisters have big dreams for the community’s youth to thrive. 

“Many of the children in the rural areas in Lowndes County are ‘at-risk children,’ meaning they have a disadvantage in the school systems and the community,” Cassandra said. “They don’t have the equipment, supplies, or funds to have community sports and activities like other cities do. We want to give this opportunity to our community’s youth so they will have the experience and exposure they need to play these sports in high school and after if they desire.”

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The Lowndes County Cowboys, with the slogan “#45 strong,” will have three separate football and cheerleader teams based on school grades, as follows: Mighty Mights for grades Kindergarten through second, Termites for grades third through fourth, and Pee-Wee for grades fifth through sixth. The Blackmon sisters also have plans to establish other sports teams throughout the year. 

“We have 12 football coaches and two cheerleader coaches,” Loretta said. “They are local residents who have experience coaching community sports and are excited to be able to volunteer.”

If a child was not able to come to the registration or practice, parents can reach out to either of the Blackmon sisters to register. 

“We grew up playing sports and the community supported us back then,” Loretta said. “We want the same for this generation. Sports help to keep kids out of trouble. It gives them something to look forward to and to feel proud about. We want the Lowndes community to thrive once again! Our hope and prayer is that this will inspire these kids to one day give back to the community in the same way.”

The non-profit, Hope’s Youth Development Services Inc., is also currently hosting a summer tutoring camp for math and reading at the Town Hall in White Hall, July 10-22. The camp is free and offers breakfast, lunch, and transportation. Students who are not already involved can still register and attend the camp. 

The organization is presently searching for sponsors; for now it operates from donations. To donate or gain information regarding little league football, cheer, or tutoring camp, contact either Loretta Blackmon at 334-868-6078 or lorettam46@yahoo.com, or Cassandra Blackmon at 334-531-1977 or grayc8000@gmail.com. 

“We want to give a big thanks to Nickles Rankins, all of our new football and cheer coaches, White Hall Mayor Delmartre Bethel, Mr. Jason Burroughs, and all of the parents and children that will be joining the teams,” the Blackmon sisters said. “We are excited to be a part of this wonderful dream and we look forward to watching it grow. Just look at what God has done!”