PEI

Toronto Blue Jays donate money to upgrade ball field on Abegweit First Nation

The baseball field at the Abegweit First Nation in Scotchfort, P.E.I., is getting $70,000 in upgrades thanks to the Toronto Blue Jays.

Jacob Jadis says the ball field is a significant part of the community

Dozens of people gathered at the Abegweit Wellness Centre on Sunday for the announcement. (Sarah MacMillan/CBC)

The baseball field at the Abegweit First Nation in Scotchfort, P.E.I., is getting more than $70,000 in upgrades thanks to the Toronto Blue Jays.

The community applied for the funding through the Jays Care Foundation's Field of Dreams program.

Dozens of people gathered at the Abegweit Wellness Centre, many wearing Blue Jays caps and jerseys, cheered when the announcement was made Sunday on the Sportsnet program Blue Jays Central.

The ball field has fallen into disrepair over the years. (Sarah MacMillan/CBC)

Jacob Jadis, a councillor for Abegweit First Nation, said the ball diamond is a significant part of the community.

I think culturally we're kind of connected to it, so it's fairly important.— Jacob Jadis

"I think culturally we're kind of connected to it, so it's fairly important."

He said the community has been picking away at repairs, but it still needs a lot of work.

"The fencing is starting to degrade, the backstop is starting to lean, and we have no dugouts. So I mean this little kick should definitely bring it right up, right up to code," he said.

Roddy Gould says he hopes more kids will use the field when the improvements are complete. (Sarah MacMillan/CBC)

Roddy Gould, who is one of the people involved with the application, said he played on the field almost every day as a kid, and still uses it. He says fewer kids use it now, but hopes that changes when the improvements are complete.

"My nieces and nephews live on the reserve here in Scotchfort. And just having somewhere where they can go and be safe and learn ball and play ball, practice ball. It's amazing. And I can't wait to see it."

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With files from Sarah MacMillan

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