Weather delays '4 in 24' youth field renovations to Sunday

Youth fields in Albany, Green Island, Menands and Ravena will be revamped in under 24 hours

By Tri-City ValleyCats | March 15, 2013 6:15 AM ET

TROY, NY- Due to the weather forecast throwing a curveball at the original '4 in 24' Youth Field Renovation plans, the majority of the renovations will now take place on Sunday, April 14 beginning at 8am. On this day, the home fields of National Little League of Albany, Green Island Little League, Menands Junior Baseball and Hudson Valley Little League in Ravena will have new sod placed on their infield, new bases put in, and the playing surface will be squared and leveled.

The '4 in 24' is the kick-off event for the Community Grounds Crew, an expanded initiative with the assistance of BlueShield of Northeastern New York. This program will undertake additional projects and renovations on numerous other youth fields throughout the spring and summer.

"The ValleyCats are proud to be partnering once again with BlueShield of Northeastern New York to continue the work of our Community Grounds Crew," said ValleyCats Vice President/General Manager Rick Murphy. "With their tremendous support, we are able to provide the youth in our community safe and well-maintained fields on which to play, and as ambassadors for the game of baseball, that is immensely important to us."

Following the formation of the Community Grounds Crew last spring, over a dozen youth ball fields have been fully renovated, with countless other field projects completed throughout the Capital Region.

"BlueShield is excited to support the important field renovations throughout our community again this year," Brian O'Grady, vice president, BlueShield of Northeastern New York, said. "We have seen the impact of tremendously improving the quality of these spaces for children to enjoy one of our country's favorite past times. Our company takes pride in encouraging children to get outside and play with their friends because as we all know- Healthy Changes Everything."

The ValleyCats field renovations have been an annual tradition since 2003 when the first field was officially renovated by the 'Cats in South Troy, just one mile away from Joseph L. Bruno Stadium. Each year since, they have expanded upon its success.

The four fields chosen as part of the '4 in 24' will also be aided by the support of Admar Construction Equipment & Supplies, who have provided the necessary equipment to complete the renovations. These projects will also be supported by the New York-Penn League Charitable Foundation. Contributions to the foundation have come from past events held at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.

Leagues not chosen for the '4 in 24' will be eligible to receive field maintenance through the ValleyCats and BlueShield of Northeastern New York's Community Grounds Crew Program. Other leagues that wish to be considered can fill out an application that is located on the ValleyCats website at The ValleyCats will accept and evaluate applications on an ongoing basis throughout the spring and summer.

SNAPSHOT: '4 in 24' Youth Leagues

National Little League of Albany (Designated Press Conference Field):

    Location:  Corner of Partridge & Providence Streets, Albany, NY 12208
    Teams: 24   Players: 280   Ages: 4-12
    2013 Opening Day: Saturday, April 20, 10am
    League President: Bryan Viggiani
    Statement from the President:
"National Little League is honored and humbled to be selected by the Tri-City ValleyCats. The improvements to our farm field will greatly benefit the boys and girls of our city neighborhoods, and will boost their interest and enthusiasm for America's National Pastime. As Albany's original Little League, we are thrilled to be a part of this program as we enter our 62nd year of baseball and contributing to the community."

Green Island Little League:

    Location:  Corner of Arch Street & Cohoes Avenue, Green Island, NY 12183
    Teams: 8   Players: 100   Ages: 4-12
    2013 Opening Day: Saturday, April 27
    League President: Ralph Razzano
    Statement from the President:
"Green Island Little League sends a huge thank you to the ValleyCats for selecting our league for the "4 in 24" field renovations. This is the 60th season that Green Island Little League has provided our children a place to play and grow. What a great way to celebrate!"

Menands Junior Baseball:

    Location:  62 Menand Rd., Menands, NY 12204
    Teams: 22   Players: 240   Ages: 4-13
    2013 Opening Day: Saturday, April 20
    League President: Steve Nicoll
    Statement from the President:
"The Menands Junior Baseball and Softball League is thrilled to have been selected for the '4 in 24'. Our league is a smaller league that relies heavily on volunteer manpower to maintain our grounds. While we do our best, the assistance will help us tremendously and we are honored to have such a great organization like the ValleyCats in our backyard."  

Hudson Valley Little League:

    Location:  2 Park Drive, Ravena, NY 12143
    Teams: 17   Players: 200   Ages: 4-12
    2013 Opening Day: Saturday, April 20
    League President: Sharon Pistritto
    Statement from the President:
"Hudson Valley Little League has worked hard over the last few years to make a positive impact on it's
community, and to improve the playing conditions for each and every player. The selection by the Community Grounds Crew Program will take our International Field to a higher level of excellence and give players for this year and years to come a better quality of play. The value of a program like this is priceless to everyone who is involved and affected."


This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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