Minor Ball Fields
Everyone has heard of the movie Field Of Dreams.
In it a character named Ray Kinsella is walking through his cornfield lamenting the fact he had a troubled relationship with his baseball-loving father.
While walking in the field he hears a voice saying: “If you build it, he will come.” He then has a vision of a baseball diamond in his field, gets to work on that diamond and, sure enough, deceased ball players, and his dad, show up to play some ball.
That may have not been the exact scenario when those behind the creation of the minor ball diamonds first walked into the forest at Evergreen Park over 20 years ago, but it is easy to imagine a similar vision was dancing through their heads.
That walk in the forest spawned what is one of the most unique and scenic minor ball setups in Canada.
The vision has turned into what is now 12 pristine minor baseball diamonds scaled to cater to young players from the five to teen. It is a beautiful setting for minor ball players only and also includes a new clubhouse.
“Grande Prairie Minor Baseball's mission is to implant in the youth of the City of Grande Prairie and surrounding areas, through the organized sport of baseball, the ideals of honesty, loyalty,courage and sportsmanship,” says the organizations mission statement.
It also says they are there to provide a safe, healthy environment that promotes physical exercise, teamwork, respect for coaches and players, sound baseball fundamentals, self-esteem, self-confidence, self-discipline and fair play, while having fun.
“We also promote the sport of baseball in all its forms, including the training and encouragement of competitive ball players.”
They have also churned out some pretty good teams and ball players.
Lars Davis, a graduate of the GPMBA, was drafted by the Colorado Rockies as a catcher in 2007; pitcher Cashtyn DeLeeuw played in the NCAA with Murray State; and outfield Meegan Cornelssen may be the most accomplished of all.The 2009 Top Female Athlete of The Year in Grande Prairie played with Team Alberta and also helped Team Canada win a silver medal at the Women’s World Baseball Championships in 2008.
Ray Kinsella would be proud of what has been accomplished at the Park . . . and so would Shoeless Joe Jackson!