Changes to the S&A Parkin Ferguson Township will be funded by the Baseball Tomorrow Fund Grant and local municipalities, Ferguson Township Assistant Township Manager David Pribulka said.
The Baseball Tomorrow Fund grant was created by Major League Baseball to help community projects in the development of baseball fields and youth baseball programs, Pribulka said.
Ferguson Township is seeking to improve the field by erecting lighting features on the field, as well as repositioning the outfield fence, Pribulka said.
The lighting features are a large part of the project and will allow the field to be used for night play, Pribulka said. The outfield fence will be repositioned so that the field’s dimensions are in compliance with PIAA standards, Pribulka said.
The State College borough has contributed $10,000 to match the funding from the Baseball Tomorrow Fund in an effort to support the neighboring township, Mayor Elizabeth Goreham said.
“If municipalities support each other on a grant, it increases the likelihood of getting the grant,” Goreham said. “ It’s important as an act of broader community.”
Though donating money to other municipalities is not usual, council President Don Hahn said is it not unprecedented either.
This field is not part of the Centre Region Parks and Recreation because it is maintained and operated by the Teener League, Director of Centre Region Parks and Recreation Ronald Woodhead said. However, it has served residents of the region for many years and allows local children to play against visiting groups, Woodhead said.
The primary beneficiary of the new field will be the Teener League, a 13-16 year olds’ baseball league that has an agreement with Ferguson Township to use the field, Pribulka said.
The new lighting will allow the Teener League more playing time and to be able to have tournaments, Teener League President Jay Nungesser said.
The Teener League will also be working to raise funds for the project, Nungesser said.
Ferguson Township has reached out to a number of other municipalities in the region for funding since it is a community field, Pribulka said, though Ferguson Township would be the primary contributors to the project.