Kirkwood baseball and softball leagues canceled due to financial issues

“It’s upsetting and disappointing for us to be canceling leagues this season, but we’re strapped for cash,” said chairman Eric Eickmeyer.

KIRKWOOD, Missouri — For more than 60 years, thousands of boys and girls have enjoyed playing baseball and softball leagues in Kirkwood.

Countless coaches have also loved being there for their children.

“You teach them how to throw a ball and hit and that kind of stuff, but you really teach them how to be a team player, how to deal with adversity on and off the court. It really prepares them for the future. life,” Kirkwood said. The president of the sports association Eric Eickmeyer.

However, this season all 12 association pitches on Marshall Road will be empty. The doors will be closed and no crowds will gather at the concession stands as the softball and baseball leagues are closed.

“It’s very upsetting and disappointing. Most of the teams had already decided to go somewhere else because we hadn’t posted any listings or anything on our website,” Eickmeyer said.

In 2019, the nearby Meramec River overflowed its banks during a rainstorm, flooding the fields and absorbing much of their income.

Factor in the two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Eickmeyer said the nonprofit’s pockets were dry.

“It stretched our resources. We worked hard to get the payroll protection plan money, and we got everything we could and it kept the staff as long as we could,” he said. -he declares.

They ran out of money to cover new on-field lights and pay top umpires, and now the sports association can’t offer baseball and softball leagues for kids ages 5-14.

Last October, Eickmeyer and his team set up a GoFundMe page hoping to raise at least $25,000 to prepare for their 12 league baseball and softball, but only $6,000 came in. It was not enough money to achieve the association’s goal.

“We’re all going to adapt to it and hopefully the community will come together and support the field and the organization,” softball coach Dave McKay said.

“Over the past few years, we’ve had a great response from the community,” Eickmeyer said.

Go to the association’s GoFundMe page to support its reopening.

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