Brookfield Youth Baseball and Softball League started a project in August to improve a ball field and ready a new practice field at Brookfield Township Community Park.
The league is having the infield surface removed from field one, the first field you encounter as you enter the park, and the material placed on the new field to the east, said league board member David DeJoy.
“It’s overworked,” DeJoy said of field one’s surface. “It’s just powder.”
The league also plans to plant grass along the dugouts on field one to try and hold the new material in place and prevent the washing out that is occurring now; and improve drainage to get rid of the standing water along much of the outfield fence, particularly in the left field corner.
DeJoy and Scott Miller met with Brookfield trustees, Road Superintendent Jaime Fredenburg and park seasonal worker Tim Mulligan Aug. 9 to go over the plans and get suggestions.
“We’ve worked on every field here except this one,” DeJoy said of field one.
The league has been raising money for a few years toward what is expected to be a $12,000 to $15,000 project.
The township agreed to allow use of its equipment for work on the new field, and road crew equipment operator Matt O’Dell will volunteer his time to grade the field.
Other donations of material and equipment also have been made.
The league also plans to apply material to the surface of field two, so it will hold water better and not dry out and crack as quickly, DeJoy said.
Trustees thanked the league for undertaking a project the township does not have the funds to do.
“I appreciate that you’re willing to do this,” Trustee Dan Suttles said.
“It’s all for the kids,” DeJoy replied.
Suttles had one criticism: the use of Round Up on the new field to kill vegetation before it is laid out and graded. Round Up, a weed killer, contains a chemical that has been linked to cancer.
“I have a problem using Round Up where kids play,” Suttles said.
Fredenburg said he believes the grading will reduce any potential effects of use of the chemical.