Light The Diamonds Project
The WPPA is excited to announce continued progress on our new project, that we believe will not only benefit the WPPA community, but many neighbors in the larger North Center and Lincoln Square communities. We are trying to bring lights to the Welles Park baseball and softball diamonds!
We have a long way to go in this project, but we have momentum, and are excited to engage with community members and constituencies to ensure that our project serves our entire community.
Where Will the Lights Go?
We are working with the Chicago Park District to explore adding lights to two of the Welles Park baseball and softball diamonds. The exact placement and design remains in process. Ultimately, we hope to be able to settle on a design that minimizes the impact on neighbors of the park while also allowing us to maximize field usage.
The fields seem fine, why do we need lights?
The WPPA offers baseball and softball to approximately 1,700 players aged 4 through 19 every spring. We play more than 700 games at Welles Park alone, and yet every year we have a waitlist. That means we have families with children want to play baseball or softball, but for whom we simply do not have the space. Adding lights will allow us to reduce or perhaps eliminate our wait list by giving us more than 100 additional field slots in our spring season. Most of those field slots will be used for practices.
We believe the lights won’t just benefit the WPPA, rather they have the potential to benefit the entire Welles Park community. With the lights on, the park will be safer at night, increase foot traffic to local businesses and restaurants, and will be available for other park activities year-round.
What's the Plan?
Right now, we are working with the Chicago Park District to explore the final design and overall project plan. We can tell everyone now that the lights will go off at 9:30p during the WPPA spring season (April-July). That is a self-imposed curfew, that we will be committing to as part of this project.
We are working with the Chicago Park District on other parts of the plan to address increased trash at the park and other items that have been raised during our community engagement process over the past several months.
However, to make lights a reality, we need to begin our fundraising process. We anticipate that the total field work and cost of adding the lights will be approximately $450,000. We are in the process of raising that funding now!
How Can I Help and Get Involved?
Already excited, and want to contribute to the project? You can submit your donation by reaching out to email@example.com. (Coming Soon will be an online donation portal). The WPPA is a 501(c)(3) and your contribution may be tax deductible.