2012 High School Trip
Travel dates: July 9-19, 2012.
Countries visited: Holland, Belgium and Germany.
Cities visited: Amsterdam, Heemskerk, Leiden and Haarlem (Holland), Antwerp and Bruges (Belgium), and Cologne, Solingen and Bonn (Germany)
Opponents: Dutch Junior National Team, Czech U21 National Team, Belgian Men's National Team and German Bundesliga Teams (Cologne Cardinals and Solingen Alligators). 9 games played.
Group size: 20 players, 4 staff members.
July 8 - Depart US independently
July 9 - Gather group at Schiphol Airport (outside Amsterdam, Holland).
July 9-13 - Games and sightseeing in Holland (Amsterdam, Leiden).
July 14-15 - Games and sightseeing in Belgium (Antwerp, Bruges).
July 16-18 - Game and sightseeing in Germany (Cologne, Bonn).
July 19 - Return flights to US from Schiphol Airport.
Trip opponents are listed under "Trip Overview" above, and trip sightseeing activities included the following: Amsterdam and Antwerp walking tours, Leiden canal cruise, Bruges (including surrounding countryside) and Rhine River bike tours, and climbing the Cologne Cathedral tower.
Tom Gillespie - Tour Leader
Stephan Rapaglia - Tour Leader and Pitching Coach
Justin Cronk (http://diamondcollegeadvisory.com/who-are-we.php) (Founder of Diamond College Advisory Team, LLC and former Head Coach at Shenandoah University) - Head Coach
Stan Exeter (http://www.ursinusathletics.com/sports/bsb/coaches/index) (Head Coach, Ursinus College) - Assistant Coach
Each of the staff members listed above has had significant experience coaching and/or teaching HS and college student-athletes, 2 of the staff members have significant national team coaching experience, and 2 of the staff members have significant professional coaching experience.
Trip Cost: $3,995 (included all basic intra-European travel expenses [i.e., ground transport, lodging and meals] and all training and competition-related expenses, but excluded airfare to/from Europe and health insurance).
Staff members were available via cellphone and email at all times during the trip to respond to emergencies.
Although the legal drinking age in most parts of Europe is 18 (or even less), OWB has a strict policy against alcohol consumption by HS trip participants. Violations of this policy or other rules of personal conduct would have resulted in the violator being sent home immediately (at his family's expense).
As OWB's trip participants serve as de facto ambassadors of US baseball, excellent sportsmanship was promoted and expected, and all OWB 2012 trip participants did a superb job in this regard.
Parents and other family members of HS trip participants were welcome to participate in this trip at their own expense. In 2012, a total of 4 family members traveled along with the OWB team.