The Union Recorder

June 6, 2013

GMC camps to help mission trip

Steven Cary
The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE — In an effort to raise funds for the upcoming Fellowship of Christian Athletes mission trip to the Dominican Republic, the Georgia Military Prep School baseball and softball teams are gearing up to host fundamentals and advanced hitting camps.

The camps will take place Monday, June 10 through Thursday, June 13 at the GMC baseball and softball complex.

Held as two separate camps, the fundamentals camp will be for rising first through eighth grade students and will take place from 8 to 11 a.m., while the advanced hitting camp will be geared toward rising eighth through 12th-graders and will be in the evenings from 6 to 8 p.m.

“I think it’s a great thing. It’s opening the opportunity to learn the sports of baseball and softball,” Allen Simmons, GMC Prep baseball coach, said. “I’m not sure if there’s ever been a baseball and softball camp at GMC.”

The fundamental camp will stress basic aspects of softball and baseball, and will implement exercises to help young players throughout the community master the skills necessary for the games.

“The fundamentals camp is just a time when it is what it is. It’s exactly the kind of thing I teach my kids, and what I was taught when I was at the University of Georgia,” Julie Brooker, GMC Prep softball coach, said. “We play a lot of fun games and try to get good interaction with the high schoolers and middle schoolers in the fundamental camps. We’re just trying to make it a positive experience and we’re trying to open up our camp to the community.”

According to Brooker, there will also be a “team” aspect to the camp.

“Obviously, the focus is going to be on softball and baseball, but we also try to teach teamwork and team bonding,” she said.

GMC Prep’s advanced hitting camp will also incorporate a sense of team unity in order to promote softball and baseball among all of the high schools in the community.

“There’s no reason why we can’t work together,” Brooker said. “You don’t typically see camps for high schoolers, but that’s kind of what we’re doing.”

Advanced hitting campers will work on different aspects of hitting, with individual video swing analysis to pin-point areas for improvement in every player.

“It’s going to be an intense two hours,” Brooker said. “I think everyone will improve, and that’s why we do it.”

Varsity players from both the GMC Prep baseball and softball teams will assist at the camps to help young players work on their craft.

“We both have a great group of varsity players that are going to help,” Simmons said. “They’re more than willing to be there.”

While both camps offer local players the chance to play baseball and softball over the summer, Simmons and Brooker also see an opportunity talk to young players about the FCA mission trip in July.

“I think its going to be great,” Simmons said. “It’s going to be a great opportunity to talk to the younger kids, and talk with them about how special it’s going to be.”

The GMC Prep coaches are pleased with the direction of the softball and baseball programs after their first seasons at the helm.

“The proceeds will benefit the mission trip. So I just feel like it’s an all-around good cause,” Brooker said. “We get to go out and play the game we love, but we’ll also be putting on softball and baseball clinics on in the Dominican Republic. I’m just really excited about the direction GMC softball is headed.”

The cost of the fundamentals camp is $100 per camper and $75 for GMC students, while the advanced hitting camp is $75 per camper and $50 for GMC students. Players can register on the first day of camp from 7:30-8 a.m.

For more information and for a camp registration form, please contact Simmons at dsimmons@gmc.cc.ga.us or Brooker at jbrooker@gmc.cc.ga.us.