CORPUS CHRISTI - The Corpus Christi Hooks plan to distribute $113,000 to Little League and youth programs in Rockport, Port Aransas, Refugio, Ingleside, and Aransas Pass.
The resources, generated by the team's #CoastalBendStrong campaign and Minor League Baseball, will aid the funding of scholarships which cover entry fees and uniform expenses. Monies are also earmarked for new scoreboards and a spring break camp hosted by the Port Aransas Parks and Recreation Department.
In addition to cash donations at Whataburger Field, money was raised online at YouCaring.com/CoastalBendStrong.
The Hooks designated a portion of the proceeds from their final homestand of 2017 for Hurricane Harvey relief. During the Labor Day weekend series, fans were offered free parking and "Pay What You Can" seating. Hooks players dedicated their season-long home run dollar earnings to the recovery effort. An autographed Corpus Christi game-worn jersey auction, and the sale of Coastal Bend Strong t-shirts contributed to the initiative.
Ainsworth Trucking also assisted in the collection of critical supplies.
The Akron RubberDucks, Biloxi Shuckers, Lansing Lugnuts and Fort Wayne TinCaps joined the relief effort by sending clothes, toiletries, and other essential items.
"It's overwhelming when you look at what our neighbors and Minor League Baseball have done to help those greatly affected by the storm," Hooks general manager Wes Weigle said. "Now is the time to put those funds to good use. We want to lend a hand in making sure kids, who've had their world turned upside down, take the field this spring and summer."
During the offseason, Hooks front-office staffers volunteered in Aransas Pass, Port Aransas, and Rockport, clearing downed trees and debris.
Teams across Minor League Baseball rallied to raise over $300,000 in the aftermath of Harvey and Hurricane Irma. Funds went to the Coastal Bend Disaster Recovery Group and other relief organizations, including the Red Cross, Salvation Army, and United Way Worldwide.
This announcement also coincides with the launch of the Hooks' Community Leaders Program. The club is currently seeking to team with corporate partners and civic leaders to support local youth sports initiatives.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.