The Dugout Club finished up a very successful 2019 and is looking to continue this momentum in 2020 and beyond. In order to do so, we need YOUR help. We are specifically looking for $4,000 of additional funds to achieve our goal of adding equipment to do necessary field maintenance work on the diamonds that roughly 1,000 kids in our communities play on each year. Edging fields and adding infield mix is very labor-intensive without the proper equipment, and has been identified as one of the biggest maintenance barriers we face each year to achieve our mission. We have raised $12,000 through various fundraising efforts and the generosity of our members and donors in recent years. The next $4,000 raised in January will be matched and allow your donations of $4,000 to grow to $8,000 and allow us to acquire equipment needed to keep our fields in top condition and make the volunteer experience much more productive.
Also, any donation of $100 or more will be commemorated with a stadium brick in your name at Chanhassen Storm/Redbirds Stadium, as we showcase to the crowds that gather to watch our talented CNHS baseball and softball teams and the 2-time defending state amateur baseball champion Redbirds for how the Dugout Club and our wonderful volunteers are helping in our community .
A quick summary of our progress the last few years:
· We continue to add to the fields we assist in maintaining annually in our communities (spring opening, edging, adding infield mix); we are up to over 20 fields in partnership with the cities of Victoria and Chanhassen as well as the CAA and CNHS athletes and their parents who have donated hundreds of hours to make this happen.
· Prior to 2019, we coordinated and completed scoreboard additions on 3 fields, and did major upgrades at Lake Susan Park (completed new dugouts and coordinated the new lights project). We also coordinated and converted dugout floors from dirt to concrete on a dozen fields.
· In 2019, we upgraded 4 batting cages (Lake Susan, Bandimere and Diethelm) with artificial turf, rebuilt the dugouts at Diethelm, added over 150 tons of infield mix to the CNHS and Bandimere complexes.
· In 2020, we would like to create a stronger partnership with local communities to implement a prescribed plan of maintenance and improvement for each field for edging, infield mix needs, weed removal and control, etc. Adding equipment will allow us to further mechanize and thereby cut the time and number of volunteer hours needed to refresh a complex from days to hours. This will allow us to keep these fields in tip top shape from spring through fall and minimize the days we need to take fields out of availability for practices and games to do this necessary work.
· We also partner with CNHS, Storm Boosters, and CAA in finding donors interested in raising funds for other capital projects to improve the player and spectator experiences.
Thank you for your past support of our organization, as we continue to focus on improving the safety, playability and enjoyment of diamond sports in our community for the 1,000 or so athletes that we support. We hope you will help us achieve our $4,000 goal in January so that we can take advantage of the matching opportunity and make those funds grow to $8,000. Finally, if there are field maintenance and/or improvement needs and ideas that you have and are passionate about supporting, please let us know that as well so we can add it to our aspirational list.