Casino Ball Fields to Get New Dirt and a Playground
By Joe Morey
The LCO Boys & Girls Club youth baseball teams will get some help by way of improved ball fields under a plan being put together by LCO Chairman Louis Taylor using a mix of CARES Act funds and Tribal funds. Chairman Taylor asked me to spearhead this effort a couple months ago after the LCO Tribal Governing Board (TGB) put aside $100,000 for youth programs from the CARES Act Covid Relief funds received by the Tribe.
Thompson Sand & Gravel was contracted to rebuild the two ball fields at the Sevenwinds Casino field with professional grade baseball dirt at a cost of $24,000 and this project will be done in the spring. Also, new playground equipment was purchased at a cost of $32,000 which will be installed at the same ball fields once the snow breaks.
In future planning for the site, Chairman Taylor said he wants to see a digital scoreboard put in at the ball fields and a new paved bike path extending from the ball fields/playground going south across the field connecting to the existing bike path between the casino and Schoolhouse Road.
With the new and improved ball fields, we hope to build on the success of the current LCO Little League team, which won the Southern Sawyer County Little League Championship in 2020. The team will be able to host tournaments with use of both fields. Men’s and Women’s softball tournaments and games may also be held there.
Over the past two years, a lot of youth ball players have moved on to the Babe Ruth age level of youth baseball and LCO hasn’t had a team, so part of the future planning is that we intend to also redo the Charles Belille Field at the LCO Ojibwe School and create a new LCO Babe Ruth team. Coach George Taylor Jr will be recruiting for that team soon.
Nothing definite on this, but the TGB has shown strong support to also develop a Little League/softball field in New Post in what was once a field some years ago. This new field may be built over the summer of 2021. In addition to this field, the playground equipment that was removed from the LCO Ojibwe School last summer to make way for their new playground will be installed at this same location. Coach Taylor and myself will be leading the charge to get this done this summer so that the community of New Post has a new baseball field and playground. Once this New Post field is complete, the LCO Little League can host some of their games there.