AMO, Ind. – Youth baseball and softball are the life of a small Hendricks County town on spring and summer nights. Soon, new fields will go up in the community of Amo to reduce the amount of weather issues the young players experience.
It's being made possible in part due to a $750,000 anonymous donation. The Cascade Youth League will use the money as part of a $1.2 million project to demolish everything on the fields next to Mill Creek West Elementary School and replace it will four new ball diamonds.
"I’m not sure I can give you enough words to tell you how excited we are and how grateful we are for this contribution," said Nic Allen, the president of the Cascade Youth League, which also provides cheerleading, football, volleyball and wrestling to area children.
The organization now have $1 million of its goal and hoped to raise the final amount needed Friday night at a silent auction and dinner at the Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds & Conference Complex. The event started at 5:30.
The Hendricks County Community Foundation is handling the donation and will go the youth league. It's the largest grant in the history of the foundation.
The $750,000 gift was donated to Hendricks County Community Foundation, which will direct it to Cascade Youth League. It is the largest grant in the history of the foundation.
The donor requested anonymity due to his faith, said William Rhodehamel, president and CEO at the foundation. However, Rhodehamel added, it is well known that the donor for many years coached alongside Brian Burch, a former local baseball and softball coach whose name will be on the new facility.
“We are thrilled to be part of this important project,” Rhodehamel said. “The Brian Burch Memorial Sports Park will have a positive impact on young people in our community for generations.”
Along with new ball diamonds, the facility will get new bleachers for fans, new dugouts for players, new fencing, lights, and concession stands and restrooms. Drainage will also improve to reduce flooding, which has canceled many games in the past.
"I’m super excited to get the new diamonds so it won’t flood like that," said fifth grader Delton Howrey.
The work is expected to begin in early June, following a spring season with the league. Construction is expected to wrap in September.