Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League bouncing back after arson

Miranda L. Pennock 10/04/10More articles
Local little leaguers have fallen into hardship, but not at the hands of those in charge. Not even due to lack of children involved.

A loss of $15,000 to $20,000 has befallen the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League at the hands of an arsonist. On Aug. 30, the little league organization was the victim of arson, as determined by fire investigators, when fire destroyed an open-air pavilion and attached concession stand, said Lindsay Miller, secretary for the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League.

“The fire not only destroyed the open-air pavilion but also our concession stand that was attached to the pavilion. Everything in the concession stand was completely destroyed,” Miller said. “The smoke from the heavy fire continued into the back off the building, which is where all of the equipment is. This is also where all the uniforms, and supplies were kept.”

With the organization’s equipment and concessions destroyed by the blaze and smoke, the community is rallying to support the kids who have counted on the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League for activity and a way to form friendships. Many businesses have taken up collections or are offering help in forms of equipment donations.

“At this time our organization is looking for donations of any kind. We are accepting monetary donations at several businesses around the Mattydale area, also at ZeroDraft in Mattydale,” Miller said.

The organization is in need of equipment donations — anything from baseball equipment bags, batting helmets, catchers gear, bases and bats. If people are interested in donating kitchen supplies for the concessions area, appliances like a refrigerator and freezer unit, microwave and fryers are all welcome.

“No donation is too small. We are so appreciative of all,” Miller said.

To aid the efforts, ZeroDraft, located at 2824 LeMoyne Ave. in Mattydale, is a drop off point for donations. The community can drop off monetary donations or equipment at the office, said Cynthia DiFlorio, marketing manager for ZeroDraft.

While a drop-off point, the local company is also part of the efforts to restore what was lost following the senseless act of arson.

“We got involved because we sponsor the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League teams,” DiFlorio said. “We’re donating our windows, insulation and door for the new facilities.”

As the community is trying to help put the pieces back together, DiFlorio said ZeroDraft is simply trying to be a central location for donations. The business already has collected some funds. Every cent collected will go directly to the restoration effort.

“We truly do have an amazing community,” Miller said. “The community has been so supportive of us through this difficult time. We have had people donating items, also we have had the Mattydale Vikings come to us and donate their bonfire [and] pep rally proceeds directly to us.”

The little league also is having a fundraiser through Pizza Hut this month. Throughout the month of October, 20 percent of proceeds from orders placed on Mondays benefit the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League.

“There is also a fundraiser coming up in November through AMF Bowling in Mattydale that will help us,” Miller said.

Aside from ZeroDraft and the fundraisers in progress, the organization also has an account set up through M&T Bank. Anyone wishing to make a monetary donation can go there and tell them it’s for Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League. Donations are also being accepted via snail mail at Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League, P.O. Box 382, Mattydale, NY 13211.

“The little league is so important because it is for the kids. Our kids are our future. Allowing them to have a place where they can come and play baseball/softball and be a kid is amazing. We love having a place for these kids to play,” Miller said. “You often see kids walking the streets and getting into trouble, but when you have a place for them to go and keep their mind on positive things, it makes it all worth it.”

With the motto, “We’re in it for the kids,” the little league organization is determined to get things back in working order.

“I would like to thank each and every one that has supported us through all of this. We are determined to get this little league back up and running,” Miller said. “These kids are too important to us not to.”

CATEGORY: Charity & Activism
TAGS: Mattydale, little league, Hinsdale, donations, arson
EDITION: Star-Review

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