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Going into extra innings

This will be the 22nd year Corapi has managed a team at Federal Little League

This will be the 22nd year Corapi has managed a team at Federal Little League

April 10, 2007

Editor's note - There are a lot of people you see around town that you recognize, but don't know anything about. People like...

Dennis Corapi

Age - 44.

Occupation - Partner in Insurance Brokers of Maryland, Hagerstown on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Hometown - Chambersburg, Pa. Now lives in Hagerstown.

Where would you see Corapi? - The "die-hard" New York Mets fan can't seem to get enough of baseball. For 22 years, he's been managing a team at Federal Little League, even though he's only lived in Hagerstown for 20 years.

When his soon-to-be-wife's boss said his son's team needed a manager, Dennis Corapi stepped up to the plate and hasn't looked back.

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"It's my favorite season. I love spring, I love summer because of Little League," said Corapi, who lives on Oak Hill Avenue.

When the family decided to move from their Cathedral Avenue home in 1994, it was with one stipulation - that it be within the boundaries of Federal Little League.

He currently serves as vice president for Federal's major league teams, but said he has never been president because then he wouldn't be allowed to coach the All-Star team.

Corapi, who graduated from Chambersburg Area High School and West Chester University near Philadelphia, said he finds stress relief just sitting at the field when there's no one there, enjoying the peaceful setting.

Corapi was born in Brooklyn, N. Y., but his family moved when he was 3 years old. His memories of baseball date back to summer visits to Brooklyn to see family.

He said there wasn't money to go to Mets games, so he and his grandfather would drive in his grandfather's "little blue Mustang" to Sheepshead Bay and listen to Mets games on the radio.

"Those are memories that you never forget," Corapi said.

As for Little League, Corapi said memories are made weekly. His own Little League memories were made in Chambersburg.

Corapi said his family is very supportive of his love for Little League, knowing that he'll be at the ballfield five or six of the six days each week there are games.

His children have their own sporting interests. Corapi's daughter, Elizabeth, who is a junior at North Hagerstown High School, plays softball. Even though his almost 11-year-old son Alex chose soccer over baseball, his son still likes to hang out at the ballpark with his dad and occasionally does some announcing of games.

The facilities at Federal Little League, which is on Northern Avenue behind the county Highway Department, have been upgraded in recent years with a new concession stand, blacktop parking area, accessible bleachers and irrigation system for drainage.

A canopy to block the sun for spectators is on the way and the next project will be upgraded lighting.

Corapi said most people don't realize how much time and money is spent on Little League.

"Our big thing is our volunteers. We've got a lot of good families," Corapi said.

He added that most of the friends he and his wife, Dawn, "hang out with" they met through Little League. The couple will celebrate their 21st anniversary on April 12.

Most Washington County Little Leagues have opening day on Saturday, April 14. Corapi encourages the public to suppport the leagues.

"I wish people could realize it's great to come during the week, sit in the stands and watch a baseball game," Corapi said. " ... They're fun."

Hobbies - Corapi said he likes to golf, but saves that sport for July and August, after Little League season.

"Of all my hobbies, Little League is by far my favorite. I think about it 12 months of the year," Corapi said.

What does Corapi like best about Washington County? - He said it's a good place to raise children, a safe community within a short drive of Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

"All-in-all, the schools are nice. Most people in Washington County are friendly," Corapi said.




If you know anyone in the community who might make an interesting Our Town feature, contact Janet Heim at 301-733-5131, ext. 2024 or e-mail janeth@herald-mail.com.

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