Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5) today hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony at Mount Pleasant High School to celebrate the school’s new athletic complex and kick off the first baseball game of the season. The event marked the first time the Mount Pleasant Kilties baseball team has hosted a game on their home turf in years; prior to renovation, the size and condition of the school’s baseball field rendered it unfit and unsafe for league games.
Councilwoman Ryan secured federal CDBG dollars to fund the athletic complex project. She consulted with Mount Pleasant High School Principal Christopher Coleman and Brian Byrnes of the City’s Parks Department to develop a master plan that would address the school’s immediate and long-term needs. Phase I of the project is completed and includes the new baseball field, a multi-purpose field, fencing, tree plantings and a walking path. Phase II will include new tennis courts, which will be moved to accommodate a new soccer field. Gardner-Gerrish Landscape Architects LLC designed the complex and Yardworx was contracted to do the work.
“This is an exciting time for Mt Pleasant baseball,” said Councilwoman Ryan. “I am happy to have been part of a team effort to bring a first-class ball field to Mt Pleasant High School. For years, substandard and unsafe field conditions left the Kilties without a home to call their own. Let’s take time to celebrate this win, while acknowledging that we still have much work ahead of us to provide our young people with the school and athletic facilities they deserve.”
In previous seasons, Mount Pleasant’s baseball team used its home field for practices only; the team was bussed to other locations for home games. According to Principal Coleman, the condition of the previous field didn’t meet the team’s needs, even for practices: the ground was uneven, and the team had to adjust to playing on larger fields during games. The new field, said Coleman, is a big morale boost for the team and cuts bussing expenses.
“Mount Pleasant High School is extremely grateful to Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan for the construction of our new baseball field and the improvements she has made to our athletic complex,” said Coleman. “Our students will now be able to play on their own field and have a facility that they can be proud of for years to come. We thank Councilwoman Ryan for her efforts to make this dream a reality for our students.”