Pod-Cast: East York Baseball Association and the Toronto Blue Jays
Wednesday evening in East York, Toronto is one that will not soon be forgotten.
BTF grant recipient East York Baseball Association celebrated the completion of the field renovation and field lighting installation at Stan Wadlow Park. BTF Executive Director, Cathy Bradley, Blue Jays pitchers Ricky Romero and Drew Hutchison, along with Blue Jays alumni and staff were on hand for the official unveiling. Romero noted, “It would mean a lot, (having field lights) especially for me. I never wanted to leave the baseball diamond. I could be there 24/7, and to this day it’s something that I don’t take for granted. Two extra hours means a lot more work.”
East York Baseball Association received a $42,270 grant from BTF and an additional $150,000 investment from the Jays Care Foundation toward the installation of field lights. The facility has served as the primary location for the Blue Jays Academy Rookie League. The program provides a summer baseball camp that operates in 40 neighborhoods and serves more than 900 children. The lights will allow for two additional hours of play each night, increasing the participation of kids throughout the summer. As summarized by Hutchinson, “It’s awesome; you don’t have to go home early. You just stay and keep playing.”
As highlighted in the video, the ceremony included speeches to the enthusiastic crowd, followed by an on-field clinic hosted by Blue Jays instructors, former broadcasters and current Blue Jays players. Our very own, Cathy Bradley, stated “I go to a lot of these events all over the U.S. and throughout the world, and I’ll say this is one of the most enthusiastic crowds. We’re so happy that you all came to support youth baseball in your community.”
It was a night to remember. Once the lights clicked off and signaled the end of the day, anticipation was sure to remain for the many games to be played this summer, and beyond.