Tides plan renovations

Published 9:12 pm Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Bennett’s Creek Little League is looking forward to the completion of upgrades this month after winning an online contest by Norfolk Tides.

Little League President Chip Ambrosino said the upgrades scheduled for the week of April 18 include leveling the playing field, painting the dugouts and changing the pitch of the dugouts’ roof.

In the contest, fan votes on the Tides’ Facebook page put Bennett’s Creek in third place behind Ocean View Little League in Norfolk and the Smithfield Recreation Association.

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Only the top two fields were guaranteed makeovers, but Bennett’s Creek was voted in as the third field by a committee of Tides employees.

The Bennett’s Creek field getting a makeover is used by its Challenger division, which caters to children with a variety of physical disabilities.

“The field right now is pretty uneven from the weather and that kind of stuff,” Ambrosino said.

“The right way to do it is getting the right equipment and doing it right – that way it will last a while.”

The person who does the Tides’ field-leveling work has 38 years of experience, Ambrosino said.

“He knows how to do it so the water runs the right way,” he said.

Changing the roof pitch will make the dugouts “a little bit nicer,” he added. “There isn’t a lot more we could do with the dugouts … (because of the) concrete foundation.”

Painting the dugouts will help protect them from the weather and freshen up their look, he said.

He hopes the entire makeover can be completed in one day. “They can possibly come first thing in the morning and make it out in one day,” he said.

Next on the Little League’s wish list are restroom facilities to replace the portables now doing the job. “Nothing beats fresh water and a sink,” Ambrosino said.

After last Friday’s launch, the 2012 Little League season is shaping up to be action-packed.

“We’re averaging about three games a week, so that’s pretty huge,” Ambrosino said. “We’re picking it up a notch and traveling around the district to different ball parks and playing against different teams.”