Members of the Tennessee Smokies front office will be teaming up with U.S. Cellular and other partners to help clean up and renovate two East Tennessee baseball fields on Saturday, March 28, including the Boys & Girls Club of Halls/Powell, and the Christenberry Ballfields. Volunteers from U.S. Cellular will be pitching in at both locations, working side-by-side with Smokies front office members on all tasks. In addition, U.S. Cellular will also be donating $1,000 dollars to each location for equipment upgrades.
"This is a very important project for us, and another way to truly make a difference in the East Tennessee community," stated Smokies Team President Doug Kirchhofer. "We're also very grateful to U.S. Cellular and our other partners for working together with us on this venture to ensure baseball is played safely and on a good field for years to come."
"U.S. Cellular has long enjoyed its partnership with the Tennessee Smokies and the opportunity it gives us to connect with East Tennessee residents," said Jack Brundige, director of sales for U.S. Cellular in Tennessee. "We are looking forward to rolling up our sleeves to help with the baseball field makeovers. Every young child should have the opportunity to play ball on a safe, well-maintained field."
"Saturday is an important undertaking by all parties involved, and we're very excited to be able to provide nice ballfields for kids and the community," added Smokies General Manager Brian Cox. "Our hope is for this to become a yearly endeavor in which we continue to provide a place to play baseball and help the game flourish."
Work to be done includes field clean-up and the creation of new dugouts, in addition to adding fencing at the Boys & Girls Club, as well as installing batting cages at Christenberry Ballfields, including new turf, placing padding behind home plate, and field clean-up among other tasks. The team will also be donating several items for use at those locations, including a home plate, bases, chalker, rakes and shovels.
This marks the second time the Smokies have teamed up with The Boys & Girls Club this month, after Smokies Stadium hosted a Pitch, Hit & Run Competition exclusively for club members on March 17 in association with the Boys & Girls Club of Tennessee Valley, and the Smoky Mountains. Additional partners assisting the Smokies with Saturday's effort are Blalock Construction, Dick's Sporting Goods and Jet's Pizza.
The Smokies will begin their season on Thursday, April 9 on the road against the Mississippi Braves, the Double-A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. The team will then return to Kodak to begin their 2015 home slate versus the Pensacola Blue Wahoos, the Double-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, on Wednesday, April 15 at 11:30 a.m. Opening Night is scheduled for the very next evening on Thursday, April 16, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Single-game tickets are now on sale, in addition to season ticket and multi-voucher ticket plans, and can be purchased online by clicking here, or by calling the Smokies Ticket Office at (865) 286-2300.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.