Saturday, May 15, 2010

Letter from a Birmingham Jail- I mean Letter to Metro Parks C League Supervisors

Metro Parks Employee,

Over the past several years, my friends and I have really enjoyed playing softball at Camp Taylor. I do not live for softball or anything like that, but it is about 10 nights a year I really look forward to. That is why I was very disappointed yesterday when I found out that the Thursday night games had been rained out.

I called 456-8117 and talked to the young man who called the game. He said he called the game at 3:15 because there was standing water and no way the field could be ready. If you do not remember, it rained about 11:30, the sun immediately came out, and the high was in the mid-80's. The games do not start until 6:30.

Attached are pictures I took of the field at 5:15. As you can see, the field was mostly dry, but a little wet (not even muddy) between 2nd and 3rd. The field was extremely playable with 1 hour 15 minutes left to dry before the first game was scheduled.

I would not make an issue of this had it been the first time this exact scenario had occurred. Many times, games have just not been made up at all and the season fizzles, with no hint of a refund. Or, the emergency plan put is to schedule several doubleheaders on a Saturday in which most people have made plans well in advance for their weekends. Everyone's Thursday evenings are relatively open, that's why we chose that night. With 8 teams scheduled to play, around 100 families schedules are affected, and a vast majority want to play on Thursday and look forward to it all week.

If the young man could check the field around 3:15 and see some standing water, even with no concept that the water may evaporate, he could get a broom or rake and spend a few minutes getting the field prepared. Some effort in playing games when precipitation falls during the day would be nice. In seven years of playing Metro Parks softball, I have seen little. The policy should be to err on the side of playing and deal with a little moisture, not treat the moisture as an excuse for a night off.

Matt Davis
Men of St. Stephen's
Camp Taylor Thursday Nights

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