Kidsday: Fun encounters at spring training

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Every year, my dad takes my brothers and me to Mets spring training. Every second is worthwhile. At spring training, a major league team gets ready for the regular season by playing exhibition games against other teams. The Mets spring training complex is in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Spring training is over and the season has begun, but it was a great trip for fans.

As an avid baseball fan, I thoroughly enjoy watching the games in the warm Florida weather. But the real thrill is meeting the Mets players. The Mets are more available to meet their fans because there is no pressure of a looming game. Also, since the fields are smaller, the fans can get up real close. The players warmly greet their fans on and off the baseball field and will even stop their cars to sign autographs. We even have run into Mets players at local restaurants.

My favorite encounters were with David Wright and Ike Davis. As David was driving out of the parking lot, he stopped his car when he saw my brothers and me in our Mets T-shirts. I got enough courage to say to him, "Nice double down the line today!" and he replied, "I appreciate it." It was so cool to speak with him. When we saw Ike, he leaned over the fence to take a picture with us.

It's these personal encounters that make spring training so exhilarating.


A Rockin Experience

I started playing guitar when I was 7. My teacher taught me the basics and a few songs. I was excited to learn all the chords, but I was even more excited to learn how to play some of the rock songs I heard on the radio.

When I was 11, I heard about the iSchool of Music & Art in Syosset. They were starting a camp where you were put into a band and you learned songs. Once your band mastered a song, they would record you. The band recorded the song and eventually made a music video for it. It was a two-week camp, and at the end, there was a concert for the parents. I enjoyed it so much that I decided I would start taking lessons at the iSchool during the school year.

One day, I got a phone call from one of the directors of the iSchool. He told me there was a position open for a guitarist in the band. I decided to try it out. We learned all kinds of songs and became really good friends. There was a concert at the Nutty Irishman, and we played our songs. The iSchool arranges this concert every year. This year's concert will be on June 9. This is a really fun place to go for music lessons, camps or bands. Find it online at ischool musicart.com, or call 516-802-5885

-- DANIELLE SISSON/Kidsday Reporter

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