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Bolden Little League celebrates opening day in Las Vegas — PHOTOS

Parents, kids, sponsors and community officials gathered Saturday at a baseball field in the Historic Westside to celebrate opening day for Bolden Little League.

The Bolden Little League was created in 2017 as a way to engage vulnerable youth and to build a better relationship with the Historic Westside community not far from downtown Las Vegas, organizers said in a news release.

On Saturday, league sponsors, the Metropolitan Police Department and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, hosted a free celebration with food, games, giveaways, and a vendor fair at Doolittle Field, 1950 North J St., where the league plays its games.

Metro officials involved in the program have said that reaching kids at this age can have a lasting impact.

“This is the age we want to reach them to show them, police aren’t the bad guys, police are your friends,” Metro homicide Capt. Robert Plummer, former captain of the Bolden Area Command said in a Review-Journal interview last year.

The league has grown from 70 kids, ranging in age from 4 to 11, during its first year to 160 in 2018, and the number is expected to increase this year, organizers said.

The free program is part of a yearlong mentorship program touching on issues such as bullying, the importance of financial stability, leadership and health.

Over the league’s first two years, Metro raised funds to cover the costs for players’ participation. This year, Anthem is a sponsor and is footing the bill for uniforms, equipment, participation and other costs.

Among those set to attend Saturday were Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield President Craig Smith, U.S. Sen Catherine Cortez Masto, Las Vegas Councilman Cedric Crear and Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom.

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