Group works to raise money for field remodel

An effort to fundraise for the makeover of Daisy Campbell Field has been established by Titusville Softball Little League. The biggest goal for the makeover is to make the field safer for both players and spectators.

Many fans of the fashion industry have long been familiar with the term “makeover.” Although the focus here isn’t about makeup and wardrobes, the premise is extremely fitting for a hoped for renovation project for Daisy Campbell Field.

“Field 1,” as it is also referred to, is one of the most used — if not the most used — recreational field in the Titusville area. Located in the Ed Myer Complex, Daisy Campbell Field has been one of two primary homes for games and practices of the younger divisions of Titusville Softball Little League. It’s also been used occasionally by Titusville Area Little League Baseball and Titusville Area Youth Football.

With all of the organizations that use Daisy Campbell Field, it seems that the field only sees a break when the snow falls from the wintery skies.

Due to all of the wear and tear that Daisy Campbell Field has endured over the years, Titusville Softball Little League is conducting a fundraising campaign to help restore the field.

Among the items that the Titusville Softball Little League wants to upgrade at Daisy Campbell Field are fencing down the baselines, new dugouts, reconstructed playing surface, and a new backstop. The project’s focus is to improve the safety for players and spectators.

“The biggest issue for us is that we can only play softball games with our 10 and under age group on that field,” Titusville Softball Little League vice president Jon Herman said. “For groups that are older, the field really isn’t safe as far as foul balls because of the lack of dugouts and fencing. It desperately needs a facelift.

“You have people come in from other communities that come in and play at our fields. To me, fields should be a big selling point for the community. The Ed Myer Complex is a beautiful facility, right up against Oil Creek State Park. Daisy Campbell is not tremendous. It needs the upgrade, and needs to be playable for all age levels.”

Titusville Softball Little League is exploring all routes of fundraising, and will give the community an opportunity to donate during the upcoming Titusville Oil Festival.

“We have flyers put up around town, asking for donations,” Herman said. “We have had people in the community during the season say to us that they would donate if we were to do anything with the field. We also are hoping to do some raffles and games of chance. We’ll have a booth at Titusville Oil Festival with some games, while asking for donations. We’re hoping to do a dinner to fundraiser before a Titusville football game.”

In addition to the money currently being raised, Titusville Softball Little League will be looking for help from the Pittsburgh Pirates. Through the “Fields for Kids” program, Titusville Softball Little League will be applying for a grant to help with the cost of the renovations. The catch is that the Pirates organization can only approve a grant in the amount of money that has already been raised for the desired project.

According to the Pittsburgh Pirates website, “the Field for Kids program is open to any independent nonprofit tax-exempt organization, school or local government unit that operates Youth baseball and/or softball programs within the Pittsburgh Pirates market areas.”

Organizations are able to apply for a grant in the amount “equal to or exceeding to” the amount of funds that have been fundraised on their own. Grants are awarded ranging from $1,000 to $25,000.

Herman further explained how the Pirates would not only match funds raised, but also any material that can be used to build items such as dugouts or bleachers.

“The Pirates will match up to $25,000, but they will also match in-kind donations,” Herman said. “It might be that we’ll get some lumber donated, and decide to build the dugouts out of wood. If some companies want to donate lumber or fencing, or if some people have some knowledge of construction, we would love to use that, as well.”

The field’s namesake, Daisy Campbell, was an avid Pittsburgh Pirates fan, and had personal relationships with Pirate greats Honus Wagner and Pie Traynor. Wagner was a hunting enthusiast and stayed with Campbell while in the area.

It’s only fitting that the team she Campbell had such a passion for would come into play to help renovate the field that honorably bears her name.

“Generations of Titusville residents have played on that field or watched their children or grandchildren,” Herman said. “I’m sure many of them have said that it would be nice if something could be done [to improve the field]. Here is the chance to do that.”

Those who are interested in helping with the restoration of Daisy Campbell Field can contact Titusville Softball Little League president Shannon Wynn, at (814) 428-4304, or Herman, at (814) 758-8450.

Borland can be reached, by email, at sports@titusvilleherald.com.

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