Youth 1st Award - Congratulations

Aug 31, 2018 12:16 PM
Keri Rateliff

The Minnesota Sports Federation (MSF) in partnership with Youth 1st, Federated Insurance, Jostens, Pearson, Cashwise, Bennerotte & Associates, Jaguar Communications, The Retrofit Companies, US Bank, Plaza Morena, Great River Energy, Profinium and the Minnesota Twins Community Fund have selected both the Lakeville South 14AA Baseball Team and Lakeville North 14AA Baseball Team as the recipients of a Youth 1st Team Award for their outstanding sportsmanship during the 2018 MSF State Baseball Tournament.

The Youth 1st Team Award recognizes positive behavior from players, coaches and everyone associated with the team (parents, fans and spectators).  “We are placing the emphasis on how you play the game, which is ultimately more important than if you win or lose.” said Mark Arjes, Founder/Director of Youth 1st.  “It has become increasingly difficult to find and retain coaches and officials for youth sports because of the abuse that they take during games.  We believe it is time to model and encourage values-based actions, creating what we call a Conduct 1st environment where the focus is on the kids, competitive energies are kept in check and officials and opponents are respected.”

“The Youth 1st Program has been a huge success at the MSF State Tournaments,” Program Administrator Dan Bradley said. “The MSF strives to create an excellent tournament experience for all players, coaches, umpires, parents and fans at our tournaments. The work Mark and the Youth 1st team has done to create a positive tournament atmosphere is instrumental in achieving that goal, and we appreciate the opportunity to partner with them. Congratulations to the recipients of the 2018 Youth 1st Team Awards!”

About Youth 1st, Inc.: ( @Youth1stMN on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

The Youth 1st Team Award was created by working with umpires and tournament directors.  The umpires provide a team selection vote after each game during the tournament based on the conduct and sportsmanship exhibited by coaches, players and fans.  Teams with a positive selection to game ratio of 80% or higher are recognized as Youth 1st Teams.  Teams are presented with a plaque and certificates PLUS tickets for all players and coaches to attend and be recognized at a Minnesota Twins home game at Target Field.  The mission of Youth 1st is to connect Conduct, Character and Community to youth activity programs.  Youth 1st is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization headquartered in Owatonna, MN.  Youth 1st is an official Playball! MN Partner.

About the Minnesota Sports Federation: (

The Minnesota Sports Federation (MSF) is a non-profit, non-tax supported organization which solely conducts recreational-amateur sports activities in the state of Minnesota. Members of the Federation receive many valuable services which enable them to enjoy recreational-amateur sports to their fullest extent.

The MSF mission is to provide wholesome community-based amateur-recreational sports opportunities that promote fun, fitness, personal growth, good sports and the development of lifetime leisure skills.

Since 1982, the Sports Federation has become a major organizational force in planning and executing amateur sports events for over 200,000 youth and adults in Minnesota.

About the Twins Community Fund: (

Established as a nonprofit organization in 1991, the mission of the Twins Community Fund is to enrich local and regional communities by providing resources for the healthy development of children and families through an association with baseball, softball and the Minnesota Twins. The Twins Community Fund is governed by a board of directors representative of the Upper Midwest.  For more information or to make a contribution visit

External links are provided for reference purposes. Lakeville Baseball Association is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites.

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