The Kings Park High School girls softball team doesn’t have to worry so much about errant fly balls and punishing weather thanks to the efforts of a local youth group.
With the aid of $3,000 and manpower provided by the Kings Park Youth Athletic Association, on Monday, two former slabs of concrete on the girl’s softball field were transformed into fenced-in, covered dugouts.
“Our baseball field butts up against our softball field, so when the teams were both playing you’d have balls flying,” said association treasurer Glenn Chiuchiolo, who coordinated the effort. “The kids were getting hit. We needed to keep them out of the sun and rain and protect them.”
The dugouts have wooden roofs, benches and fences surrounding the concrete flooring.
Construction of the dugouts came after Kings Park Board of Education recently accepted the $3,000 donation, which was raised by the youth group through local fundraising events, Chiuchiolo said.
The district’s athletic director, Dan Butler, said the dugout project is just a continuation of the Kings Park Youth Athletic Association’s work to help upgrade the school’s facilities with what the district may not otherwise be able to fund.
Last year, the group raised $25,000 to build a junior varsity baseball field, complete with fences, dugouts with benches, a sprinkler system and a regraded sod field. The field was unveiled in April.
“Any time we can partner with this group, it helps pull the community together,” Butler said.