The city of Faulkton recently completed a major renovation of its baseball complex with the help of the Minnesota Twins.
In an effort to keep America’s Pastime part of its future, the Faulkton baseball and softball teams hosted a five-game showcase on Tuesday.
“Small town baseball is kind of dying. There’s just so many demands in the summer with camps and things like that, and so we’re just trying to create a little more excitement for the kids, try to keep them outside and keep playing baseball,” Junior PeeWee Coach Sal Roseland said.
Thanks to a $10,000 donation from the Twins Community Fund and generous local sponsor support, Faulkton was able to renovate their baseball fields and able to put on a showcase for the town and the kids.
The celebration also featured Twins’ legends Kent Hrbek and Tim Laudner, who threw out the ceremonial first pitches.
“Sal asked us if we’d come out and we thought it’d be a great opportunity to come out and say hi to the town and the kids, and have a fun day at the ball park,” Twins Hall Of Famer Kent Hrbek said.
Hrbek and Laudner’s relationship with Roseland goes back years after meeting through pheasant hunting. Laudner says the event wasn’t about their presence, but rather showing support for Faulkton and small town youth sports.
“This is about the kids having an opportunity to play and all we’re trying to do is come along and help them celebrate this particular game,” Twins Legend Tim Laudner said.
Over 500 people attended the event, giving the kids playing small-town ball, the feeling of the big leagues.
“Kind of give them a big league experience and show them kind of what the big leaguers do,” Roseland said.
“It’ll be fun to watch the kids to see if they get nervous out here because it’ll probably be a big deal for them which will be fun,” Hrbek said.
The Faulkton community is hoping this will be a memory these kids never forget.
“Hopefully at that point they will really realize what a great experience it is and very unique opportunity they’re having,” Softball Coach Trisha Hadrick said.
The Twins Fields for Kids program has granted more 3.7 million dollars to improve nearly 700 ball fields since its inception in 1999.