Ball players in Tiny could be facing a brighter future, while keeping those in the dark happy as well.
Correspondence from Donny Woods, former director of Wyevale Minor Baseball, was addressed at a recent Tiny committee of the whole meeting, in regards to a cost-sharing partnership that would replace the halogen bulbs at the village ball diamond with LED lights.
The letter to council from Woods noted the aged technology of the bulbs in several respects as well as what an upgrade could provide for the community.
“I think we’re able to replace what’s there fairly simply because the (uprights) poles are still good,” Woods said via telephone. “(The initiative is) to get what we need to replace those old halogen bulbs into new LED bulbs, which will make not only brighter but safer, not only for players but for fans as well.”
Council discussed the letter as a matter for consideration, and relayed encouraging messages about the cost-sharing aspect.
Coun. Cindy Hastings had spoken to Woods about the issue.
“(Woods has) been talking to some different partners about raising some money,” stated Hastings. “We do have a policy now that we utilize cost-sharing so it’s a process that we go through if there are community partners that want to come forward and contribute to some capital items in our parks.
“I think it’s a good initiative. Any time a community member comes forward and wants to participate and make their parks better, I think we should try and support that,” Hastings added.
Woods noted that several local businesses, organizations, community groups and individuals had expressed interest in contributing to the upgrade. As the owner of Factory Recreation, Woods included his own local business as a contributor for the cost-sharing initiative.
For the Wyevale Tribe men's league team of Wyevale Minor Softball, Woods noted their reliance on sufficient lighting for their games.
“They play mainly at night, and later into the season because of playoffs,” said Woods. “That team has money and is willing to raise more money for the lights because they’re directly affected by this as well.”
Deputy Mayor Steffen Walma shared his thoughts to council on the matter.
“I too have had the opportunity to speak to Mr. Woods on the topic; I agree that the lights in Wyevale are… ‘acceptable’ is an acceptable term,” said Walma with a laugh. “They definitely could use some updating.
“This could potentially fit – not only from an improved municipal services perspective too – but they are the old halogen-type bulbs so they use more energy, and the transition would be to LED which is another good piece as well.
Coun. Gibb Wishart was also amused by the benefits of modern LED lighting.
“The new design of LED lighting for places like parks and baseball diamonds and soccer pitches… interfere less with the dark sky initiative,” informed Wishart. “So they are generally friendlier for those of us who like to lie out on a towel and look at the stars with their sweetie.”
Mayor George Cornell noted that any overlap in standards regarding the physical upgrade of LED lights in the township would need to be explored, while praising the efforts of Woods and volunteers in the community.
“I think it’s great that the community wants to participate; we just need to close the loop in terms of what it is that we’re recommending for our facilities,” Cornell said.
Council asked staff to assist Woods with the requirements of the request within the parameters of the township’s capital cost-sharing policy, to be evaluated in a future meeting of council.
The Wyevale ballpark lights correspondence from Donny Woods can be viewed within the agenda page located on the Tiny Township website.
Archives of council meetings are available to view on Tiny township’s YouTube channel.
Derek Howard, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, MidlandToday.ca