WAIMEA — In the mid-1970s, a group of men weren’t satisfied with their current sport and got together to form a baseball team. Nearly 40 years later, the Barteks Baseball team got together once again.
The Barteks, a baseball team that started as an alternative to the weekly bowling night and turned into a fearsome recreational league team, met at the Kaumakani Baseball Park Pavilion earlier this month to reminisce about the glory days.
“We had a great time,” Bartek founder Ron Aceret said. “We looked at some old pictures. Talked about the old times and heartwarming moments about players who have passed away.”
The Barteks were based on the Westside, mainly practicing at the Waimea High School field. The team played against local teams around Kaua‘i and occasionally took on teams on other islands.
“At first we were kind of like the Bad News Bears,” Aceret said. “But once we started practicing hard we did pretty well and our name got around the other islands.”
When the Barteks started growling old and the competition younger, the team disbanded in the mid-80s. Some players moved to less stressful sports like golfing or back to bowling, others continued on in older baseball leagues. But for the 40 or so men that smacked the baseball around the fields of Kaua‘i decades ago, the Barteks will always be a great memory.
“It was just a great time to get together,” Aceret said. “It was great to have a reunion.”