The Richfield Babe Ruth Association and Snow College were able to hammer out an agreement to save the 2020 youth baseball season during a meeting Friday evening.
“It was a very emotional week for us,” said Brett Hiss, president of the Richfield Babe Ruth Association.
The season started out May 18, but was cancelled due to concerns that the league would not be able to fulfill the requirements to use the baseball complex located on the campus of Snow College Richfield.
However, Snow President Brad Cook called a meeting with the league to help hammer out details with the league over the weekend.
The initial cancellation stemmed from the COVID-19 pandemic. The state of Utah mandated all college facilities be closed until at least June 15.
“We never had to ask permission in the past to use the fields,” Hiss said. He said the association board felt the league was following all the guidance given by the local health department, but concerns about the restrictions prompted league officials to cancel the games — some of which were already in progress.
“We worked so hard to get an agreement together,” said Heidi Stringham, Snow public involvement coordinator.
While the state has moved to a yellow phase that allows for team sports, the plan still requires social distancing measures, tracking participants and limiting group sizes.
“This pandemic has presented us with situations we have never experienced before,” Stringham said. “We are doing our very best to allow access to our facilities while following guidelines given to us. Health and safety are our top priorities, and we appreciate understanding and patience while we navigate together through these complex details. Regarding this particular situation, college staff members have responded quickly and with the best information they have been given.”
The request to use the field was not typical due to the pandemic, and the college worked to accommodate the needs of the baseball league, Stringham said.
“We look forward to continuing the conversation as we work together through this and in the future,” Stringham said.
Cook met with league and city leaders to find a workable solution, which was announced Saturday.
Hiss thanked Cook as well as the community for the support the league has received.
“Ultimately things worked out for the kids,” Hiss said. “That’s truly what’s important.”
Snow announced last week that most of its facilities would be reopened for use by the public June 15.