UNION — The Miracle League of Union County is now just $5,000 away from its $250,000 fund raising goal thanks to a donation by the City of Union.
Mayor Harold Thompson presented league officials, members, players and league mascot “Homer” with a check for $50,000 during Tuesday’s Union City Council meeting. Council had previously voted to make the donation, but Thompson said the presentation had been delayed while the league got its tax certification from the State of Carolina.
“Council voted a few meetings ago to donate $50,000 from the Hospitality and Accommodations Tax Fund to the Miracle League,” Thompson said. “We had not done it earlier because they hadn’t got their 501C3 certification from the state. According to the guidelines they have to be a 501C3 before they can receive the funds.”
Thompson said the city is happy to support the league and the special needs athletes it serves.
“We’re very happy to do it,” Thompson said. “This is the city’s part to support the physically challenged children and adults. We’re looking forward to the games starting on the new field and I will get to as many games as I can.”
Among those accepting the check from Thompson was Amy Austin, league executive director, who said the donation brings the league close to its fund raising goal.
“It puts us much closer to meeting our goal of $250,000 for the construction of the field,” Austin said Wednesday. “With that amount and everyone else that’s contributed we are just $5,000 away from our goal.”
The league is raising funds to modify Field No. 2 at the Timken Sports Complex to make it a low-impact surface, allowing disabled children and adults to play baseball. The project is expected to cost $250,000 and Austin said that while the league is still in the process of raising the required funds it is already making some purchases for the modifications.
“We’ve already started spending some of the money,” Austin said. “We have already purchased some fencing, a flagpole, and some materials for the dugout.”
Austin said the league has also decided what type of surface the field will have.
“We visited a Miracle League field in Charlotte that went with the poured in surface and a field in Boiling Springs with a rolled out product,” Austin said. “Both of those products are endorsed by national Miracle League guidelines. We chose the poured in field because the overall appearance is much better and would be better accommodating for our players.”
Austin said that plans are to begin modifying the field after the team currently using it gets done in June.
For more information about the Miracle League and/or to contribute toward the new field surface contact Amy Austin at 864-466-7879.
Editor Charles Warner can be reached at 864-427-1234, ext. 14, or by email at email@example.com.