I’ve not felt compelled to write a letter to the editor before, but after the past weekend, I simply can’t help myself! I’ve never been so proud to be a resident of Gaylord, nor have I been SO impressed with a group of people working together on a true community project as I am as I reflect on the efforts of the community of Gaylord in hosting such a fantastic opening weekend of the 86th Annual MN State Amateur Baseball Tournament.
Kudos to the Gaylord Baseball Association, the City of Gaylord, and countless individuals (specifically the ballpark’s namesake, Billy Walsh, and GBA President, Bill Schulte) for the past five years of tireless planning, preparation, building, work on the field, organization and financial support that has resulted in one of the finest small town baseball fields in Minnesota—Walsh Field —a site that visitors, ballplayers, fans, and umpires alike have been absolutely raving about!! As citizens of Gaylord, I truly hope we all realize what a gem we have in our community in Walsh Field.
In addition to the planning, the hours of hard work over the past weekend by the Gaylord Baseball Board, Islander team members, State Tournament Committee Chairs, and an energetic ARMY of volunteers was simply unparalleled—whether you were there taking tickets, selling concessions and souvenirs, working on the grounds crew raking and readying the field, beautifying the park with flowers, keeping our ballpark free of garbage, assisting people in finding a place to park, washing bases, shagging balls, running the scoreboard, announcing a game, singing the National Anthem, welcoming players and umpires to beautiful Walsh Field, or simply there to oversee that everything was running smoothly, each and every individual doing their own job, and doing it well and with a smile, is what made people comment time and time again on what a fantastic job the folks of Gaylord are doing in putting on such an enjoyable state baseball tournament!!
I would encourage each and every one of you, whether you’re a baseball fan or not, to make your way to the ballpark sometime over the next two weekends to see what all the excitement’s about! I would also encourage you to get involved—check out www.mbastatetourney09.com and contact Volunteer Coordinator, Cathy Grack—there are still a lot of fun jobs to fill!! We should all be excited to showcase our ballpark, our city and our civic pride. So, congratulations Gaylord and “Take Me Out to the Ball Game!”