Long before the Boonville 8U and 12U All-Stars make their trip to the Babe Ruth Softball World Series in Jensen Beach, Florida on July 28th through August 4th, they will have walked most of Cooper County seeking donations for the eight day adventure.
With a cost of $32,000 for each team to make the trip to Florida, Boonville Babe Ruth Softball Administrator and Missouri State Commissioner Kathy Howard said the money raised from donations and fundraisers will go towards gas, hotel stay and food. Howard said each player is also required by  the Babe Ruth League to buy a jersey for the tournament. However since both the Boonville 8U and 12U All-Stars captured regional championships, Howard said they will get a full set of uniforms by the Babe Ruth League.
“I think it’s neat that we have two teams going to the Babe Ruth World Series,” Howard said. “I think it shows our program is strong and thriving each year. I think it’s a great thing for the girls to experience, but I also want to say that I was really impressed with all of our all-state teams this year. Every team took either first or second in their division and qualified to move forward on to the tournament trail. We are just very thankful to the community for their support of Babe Ruth softball.”
In addition to the two Boonville teams going to the Babe Ruth World Series, Howard said two other teams from the state will also be playing in the 10 and 14U divisions.
“That is extremely unusual,” Howard said. “Even though the 10U and 14U teams won’t be playing in the Babe Ruth World Series, they will compete in the Show-Me State Games this weekend in Columbia so their summer season is still going.”
As for the fundraising just to get to Florida, Howard said the 8U All-Stars had already had one event with a silent auction, 50/50 raffle and a raffle to sell tickets for a  rifle and quilt at the Cove. Then, on Friday and Saturday, July 20-21, Howard said the Boonville 8U All-Stars were scheduled to attend the Pilot Grove Rodeo from 8-9:30 p.m. on both nights to sell raffle tickets for a quilt.
After a scrimmage with a small admission fee on Tuesday, July 24th, Howard said the 8U All-Stars will also be at the Cooper County Youth Fair on Wednesday, July 25th to sell raffle tickets for a rifle and quilt.
The Boonville 12U All-Stars are also in the midst of their fundraising, which actually began on July 18-19 at WJ’s with 10 percent of all dine-in sales and 20 percent of all gift certificates going directly to the team.
Howard said the 12U All-Stars are also holding a “Grillin’ for Gold” fundraiser on Sunday, July 22 at Walmart from 10:30 a.m. or until they run out of food.
Free will donation suggested at a minimum of $5.
Then, on Saturday, July 21, Howard said the 12U All-Stars will take donations as well at the Pilot Grove Rodeo.
Maggie’s Bar and Grill on Main Street is also raffling off a $100 gift certificate for the 12U team, Howard said.
In addition to all of the fundraising, Howard said each player on the 12U team is also seeking money for a sponsorship grid. She said if everybody fills their grid, that is another $8,000 for the team.
“What money the teams don’t raise the parents will have to pay the rest for the trip,” Howard said.
The Boonville 8U and 12U teams will leave for Florida on July 25 and 26.