Every year, USA Softball conducts National Umpire Schools across the country to help the men & women in blue adapt to recent rule changes and hone their skills on the field. This year, one of those schools returns to North Dakota. Bismarck will play host to umpires from around the region and beyond at the end of April for a tremendous weekend of education, training, and camaraderie.
The school will get underway on Friday, April 26th at 7PM for a training session with the entire group at St Mary’s Grade School. As the weekend progresses, the scene will shift to the Clem Kelly Softball Complex for field drills and activities. Those on-field sessions on Saturday & Sunday will see the umpires divided into four groups that will rotate among each breakout session. The school is expected to wrap up around the middle of the afternoon on Sunday, April 28th.
The man in charge of the entire event is our own Umpire-in-Chief, Mike Wolf. Mike will be joined by our roster of Deputy Umpires-in-Chief to assist the national clinicians throughout the weekend. The national clinicians are members of the national umpire staff who bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with each student. Among those who will be working at the Bismarck school are the following:
A fourth clinician is expected to be assigned by USA Softball soon.
The registration fee for the school is $85. North Dakota umpires will have $15 of that paid for them out of the state’s umpire training and evaluation fund. Those who register prior to April 1st will receive a free newly-designed North Dakota umpire flipping coin. Furthermore, all attendees will receive a National Umpire School dri-fit shirt and lunch on Saturday & Sunday.
Organizers will be providing attendees the opportunity to pre-order umpire uniforms and gear as well as USA Softball leisure apparel in advance of the event.
Blocks of rooms have been reserved at a pair of hotels in Bismarck & neighboring Mandan. Check out our National Umpire School web page for more details on accommodations and the school in general as well as the registration form and a link to pre-order merchandise.