The New York Department of State announced the approval of a $5000 grant that Town of Salina Park Commissioner Jim Wemesfelder, wrote for a drainage project at Burnham Park in Mattydale. The project is designed to drain fields 9 and 10 on Westwood Avenue that have heretofore have been unplayable much of the season. The grant request was initially sent to and through Sen. John De Francisco's office and with the senator's recommendation approved by the Department of State.
Wemesfelder has designated these fields be used for the Challenger League made up of youngsters between the ages of 7-15 who, in some cases, have severe handicaps. This has been a collaborative effort between Wemesfelder and District 8 president, Dan Cavallo and the Town of Salina Highway Department; the latter of which has pledged its equipment and expertise with trenching, piping and restoration.
Cavallo will commit District 8 funds for materials beyond what the grant will cover to complete the project.
Burnham Park was deeded to the town of Salina in the 1970s from the United States Department of the Interior as excess property. Since that time, the town through federal and state grants and its own resources has committed hundreds of thousands of dollars in park development. This forty-five acre park includes 10 baseball/softball fields, two football and soccer fields, basketball court, tot lots, restrooms, parking lots, a pavilion and a gazebo.
Attached photo: Town of Salina Park Commissioner Jim Wemesfelder, right, with Amy Franco, of CHA engineering, discussing a grant Wemesfelder wrote for a park improvement.