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U. S. Steel & Gary SouthShore RailCats Team Up to Restore a Little League Field

May 7, 2021

U. S. Steel & Gary SouthShore RailCats Team Up to Restore a Little League Field

It’s time to play ball! In partnership with the Gary SouthShore RailCats professional baseball team, 50 U. S. Steel employees worked together to renovate the Roosevelt Little League baseball and softball field in Gary, Indiana, on Friday, April 16. Their efforts helped revive Little League baseball and softball in Gary and its surrounding areas.

The field’s restoration was sponsored by the Home Field Advantage Foundation, an organization founded by U. S. Steel and the Gary SouthShore RailCats, that funds baseball and softball programs in Gary, Indiana. 

The project began when Ken Bauer, a Labor Relations Representative at Gary Works and a member of the Home Field Advantage Board of Directors, and Brian Lyter, President of the sports and entertainment company that owns the RailCats, were talking about ways to help grow local participation in baseball and softball.  The Roosevelt Little League Field had gone unused for two years, but with proper work could serve as a good home for two recently consolidated local leagues. 

Together more than 60 volunteers from the two organizations removed and replaced the existing infield, painted the dugouts and concession stands, repaired bleachers, and performed a general cleanup of the park. Additionally, volunteers brought in 50 tons of limestone screening, a material that requires less upkeep than grass or dirt and provides expansive drainage abilities. They completed all of this in just eight hours.

The recently renovated field will provide a competitive space for baseball and softball players ages 11 – 13 just in time for the summer playing season. In fact, the volunteer team did such great work that the field will even host a major all-star tournament this year.

In his thank you note to his colleagues who volunteered for the project, Ken shared news of the all-star tournament, saying the following:

“Thank you everyone for making this field playable again and looking so good … This is only possible because of all the work that was done last Friday.”

Huge thanks to all the employees who stepped up to the plate to make a difference for so many little league players. Check out local coverage of their volunteer efforts here:

Northwest Indiana Times story

Chicago Tribune story

Infield - Before

Infield - After

Outfield - Before

Outfield - After