Green Bay Booyah seeking host families
By Rich Palzewic
GREEN BAY – Two area teams are seeking the community’s help.
The Green Bay Booyah Baseball Club and the Green Bay Voyageurs Football Club are looking for host families.
Both teams will play their games at the new Capital Credit Union Park in Ashwaubenon beginning this season.
“We are in need of host families in the Green Bay area,” said first-year assist GM Austin Hansen, who was most recently with the Madison Mallards helping with their host-family program the last four summers. “In addition to the Northwoods team, the new stadium will also host a summer collegiate soccer team, which will be a part of the Premier Development League (PDL). Like the Booyah, it will have some of the top talent from around the country.”
Hansen noted that families are needed from approximately the end of May through the middle of August.
Families would need to have sufficient space in the home, provided breakfast to the players and make them feel welcome.
“Along with helping out a player, there are perks to being a host family,” Hansen said. “There are a lot of events throughout the year they have the chance to attend. They’d also get season tickets and merchandise discounts.”
The players will end up building good relationships with the family, but in the case of the baseball season, the players are playing 72 games in 76 days, so much of their time is spent on the road or at the ballpark.
The new PDL team will have a very similar timeline, but those players will have about 15 games, so they will be around the area more.
“We are hoping many of the same families will host, but we are also looking for new ones,” said Hansen. “Maybe with the move to the new stadium closer to Lambeau, more will want to host. Typically speaking, families take one athlete into their homes, but from my experience in Madison, sometimes it was more. It’s whatever the family is comfortable with.”
Hansen noted that there is an online application to fill out to be considered.
If you go to northwoodsleague.com/green-bay-booyah/ and click on the “Community” link, you will find the questionnaire.
Host family testimonials – Brian Bolssen
“I myself have been hosting since 2010,” said Bolssen. “I love the game of baseball, so hosting collegiate players trying to better themselves and watching them play throughout the summer is awesome. Every spring we can’t wait to see the new roster and the player or players we are assigned to host. Getting to know them before they get here and watching them play spring baseball is fun. Then the anticipation of them arriving around the Memorial Day weekend is brutal. We have hosted 16 different players over the last nine years and loved every minute of it. The boys and their families are always so thankful to have great families taking care of their sons for the summer. It is also a joy to get to know these young men and follow them throughout their career no matter where they land. I personally have contact with most of the players we have hosted and even get to go visit some of them in their home cities. Our family enjoys our summers hosting and spending time at the diamond when time allows. It is also a great way to meet new families that host and get to know them throughout the years.”
“We started hosting because, while we had supported the team for several years going to games, we wanted to be able to do more,” Domnick said. “This was our second summer hosting and it was another great experience. We started the season with an infielder and catcher; due to one being a temporary player and the other sustaining an injury, we didn’t get to spend much time with these two boys (especially with how the schedule is set up with so few off days). However, they were quickly replaced with another infielder and an outfielder and they spent the remainder of the summer with us. They were a great addition to our family! Both of them interacted wonderfully with our 7-year-old daughter, had dinner with us when they were available and even joined us to Miller Park to watch a Brewers’ win. They both played an integral role in helping the ‘Frogs win, so that made it even more exciting while watching the games. One of the best parts of being a host family is being able to interact first-hand with someone who is living a completely different lifestyle than my husband or I did growing up; while we were both athletes, we didn’t have the experience of living with another family or playing sports at this level. We also get to introduce this to our daughter and she is given the (albeit temporary) experience of having a sibling. We look forward in the spring to hearing who our new players will be and introducing them to the Green Bay culture.”