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Reopen SC Baseball Tournaments

BASEBALL TOURNAMENTS

Please click on "Read the Petition" to view the letter sent to the "leaders" at the SCPRT (https://www.scprt.com/) on May 12, 2020. We have yet to hear from them.

With the news coming out today May 19, 2020 we will not see a tournament for at least 5 more weeks (video is here - https://is.gd/8S19Qa). We need to open the baseball fields in South Carolina for tournaments.

Governor's Office: 803-734-2100 Option 2
SCPRT Phone Numbers: 803-734-0166 or 803-734-1700

Emails: dparrish@scprt.com; aduffy@scprt.com; ddawson@scprt.com

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Reopen South Carolina Baseball Fields

Below is the letter sent to the "leaders" at the SCPRT (https://www.scprt.com/) on May 12, 2020. We have yet to hear from them. With the news coming out today (May 19, 2020), we will not see a tournament for at least 5 more weeks (video is here - is.gd/8S19Qa). We need to open the baseball fields in South Carolina for tournaments.

Phone number: 803-734-0166 or 803-734-1700
Emails: dparrish@scprt.com; aduffy@scprt.com; ddawson@scprt.com

Good Evening Duane, Amy, and Dawn,

I hope all is well. The intent of this email is to have someone acknowledge when baseball tournaments can recommence. To be clear, I was in favor of shutting down for 2 to 3 weeks in the beginning of March until we understood the situation at hand. Leading into the weekend of March 14th we had a tournament with 47 teams (11 teams from out of the upstate) and 3,000+ spectators when COVID-19 was on an uptick. Prior to this weekend we had two additional tournaments that hosted 45 teams along with the same number of spectators. I implemented precautionary measures and guidelines and not person contracted this virus.

Make no mistake about it, I am not taking away from the severity of this or any disease, but I am struggling to understand why at this point in time, not one municipality wants to make the first move in getting these tournaments gradually rolled out especially since sports tourism has a $20+ billion dollar economic impact on the state of South Carolina. Sports tourism employs 1 in 10 people throughout the state and to risk further demise of the economy when the COVID-19 numbers do not warrant it; is absurd.

There are preventative recommendations and common-sense measures that we will take, but I have yet to have one person listen to me without passing the buck. To continue to have folks make blanket recommendations is simply not logical. There are plenty of folks in my position that can guide the decision makers on the corrective measures that need to take place when it comes to baseball facilities. In return, I would not pretend to understand what is needed for Outdoor Fitness Equipment, Picnic Shelters or Playgrounds as I do not understand those day to day activities.

To have public parks, flea markets, big box stores at capacity and pools, salons, gyms, and many other entities open back up, but suppress organizations like mine, parents, and their children from playing baseball is simply unimaginable. If it is good for one, it should be good for all. I speak for the thousands of coaches, parents and kids within the baseball community reaching out to us each week looking to play.

Let me provide you with a logical precautionary breakdown:

The area required for a 60/90 baseball field is 130,680 square feet (400 x 400) or 3 acres of land. Let’s take a little league field which is less that 2 acres or 87,120 square feet which includes the surrounding boundaries of the actual field itself.

Let us take it even further and please stick with me. Let’s say the field is (200 x 200), which is 40,000 square feet, per the Governor’s orders for the state of South Carolina guidelines are current set at 5 customers per 1000 sq. ft., so at 40,000 sq. ft., you can fit 200 people.

So, let us look at the actual numbers of how many people we have at a field on any given tournament.

• 12 players per team = 24 players
• 3 coaches per team = 6 coaches
• 2 umpires per field = 2 umpires
• 3 fans per player = 72 fans

This equals 104 people which is less than 200 people within a 40,000 square foot environment, so if you take the actual square footage of a youth baseball field which is 87,120 square feet, we have ample space to preform social distancing at our events.

All this said, I took the liberty of providing a few bullet points of some of the precautionary measures and guidelines we will put in place to protect the kids, parents, umpires, coaches, and my staff.

• No Contact/No Handshake Policy
• We recommend no sharing drinks.
• No spitting seeds at the facility.
• Closing the batting cages and playgrounds at the baseball facilities.
• Limiting the concession stands (in which I explained to the parks I would be willing to develop a mobile app for free for them to take orders via cell phone). This will limit congregation at the concession stand.
• Spectators can feel free to bring a mask, bandanna etc. or we can provide them at the facilities.
• Spectator social distancing and to suggest a few guidelines:
o No congregating behind the back stop.
o Allow parents to sit behind the temporary fences in the outfield for the younger kids.
o As for the older kids, we do not have as many in attendance so sitting up and down the fences along their respective sides will give us plenty of room.
• Put additional seating on the side of the dugouts, or have their kids have their own chair.
• Game play for example: if you take a 4-field complex with 24 teams and split them up into 3 groups of 8 team, these teams can play back to back games minimizing he amount of people at the park. After those first 8 games are done, everyone leaves the park. The facility spends 30 to 60 minutes disinfecting the dugouts and bathrooms. Then another group of 8 come in to play.

There are other measures that we will take, but in all honesty, this should suffice.

I look forward to your reply and a further discussion in taking the next steps to getting us back on the fields. Thank you!

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