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Heartland Youth Softball and Baseball Commission to hold second community meeting

Post Date:February 17, 2017 10:00 a.m.

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Contact:                     Wendy Meyer-Schmidt, Public Information Officer
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Email:                        wendym@grand-island.com
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Release Date:             Feb. 17, 2017—Immediate

 

Heartland Youth Softball and Baseball Commission to hold second community meeting 

            Grand Island, Neb.— On Wednesday, Feb. 22, at 6:30 p.m., the City of Grand Island will be the meeting location for a second meeting of the Heartland Youth Softball and Baseball Commission.  The meeting will be held in the community meeting room downstairs at City Hall, 100 E. First St.

            Coaches and board members of any youth softball or baseball organization in Grand Island, as well as any community member are encouraged to attend the meeting.

            Since the first meeting of the group in October, Heartland Commission Coordinator Whitey Richardson has met with many key members of the commission to discuss the vision for the group. At this time it appears the commission will divide into two commissions—one for youth softball and one for youth baseball. This will allow the teams, coaches, and members of each commission to focus on the needs and desires of a specific sport. This topic will be further discussed at the meeting, as well as the future development of infrastructure needs of the commissions and how the Food and Beverage Tax plays a role in paying a portion of the costs.

           Other initiatives of the commission could include:

               -revitalize the current Grand Island leagues that elect to play recreationally in Grand Island, avoiding costly travel;

               -work with each of the member organizations and teams to create a workable schedule for field usage in the 2018 season; 

               -free clinics for players focusing on fundamental training, as well as clinics for coaches teaching coaching techniques; 

               -make Grand Island the home of multiple major tournaments, which will bring people to Grand Island and allow teams to stay in Grand Island and play on home turf.

            The overall vision of this initiative is to have the Heartland Softball Commission and Heartland Baseball Commission serve as a singular voice for the affiliated sport that would communicate with the Parks and Recreation Department directly in terms of current facilities, how best to utilize those facilities, costs associated with the facilities, and if new fields were built how to maximize the facilities for the best overall impact for all youth players. 

            Currently, the Parks and Recreation staff attempts to accommodate the needs of nearly 40 teams and organizations for softball and baseball field and facility usage. From high school teams, to Legion teams, to recreational leagues, to numerous independent travel teams—the large number and diversity of teams creates numerous logistical challenges for staff. It is hoped that with the creation of these two commissions the needs of both could be better met.

 

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