Stratford council approves lighting upgrades for MacNeill Field
The Town of Stratford will fund an upgrade to the lighting at upper MacNeill Field and new lights for the lower field.
Council approved the resolution at its June meeting, fulfilling a long-standing request from the Stratford Minor Baseball Association.
The new lights will complement extensive upgrades to lower MacNeill Field that were completed prior to the Canada Summer Games in 2009. The upgrades to the upper field were required due to the age of the current infrastructure and electrical issues that have plagued the field over the past few years.
The minor baseball association has around 225 players registered across multiple age groups and demand for field time has increased, prompting the need for immediate upgrades.
“These upgrades will allow the Stratford Minor Baseball Association to expand its current capacity and give our baseball players that big-league experience you only get while playing under the lights,” said Coun. Jody Jackson.
“Having the new lights will also allow for a substantial increase in field time available, especially when the days are shorter in May, August and September.”
Mayor David Dunphy suggested the upgrades are a means to provide the town’s children and adults with another opportunity to stay active in the community.
“With the current mental health crisis that is going on in our society, it is important that we, as a town, provide our residents with every opportunity possible to stay physically and mentally healthy,” he said.
Joe Caroll, president of the minor baseball association, said the field upgrades will help grow the sport in the town.
“We have been experiencing year over year growth annually and have some of our highest participation numbers in our youngest divisions,” said Carroll.
“This infrastructure upgrade will ensure we are well positioned now and in the future to support the youth of Stratford.”