In it for the kids

Local little leaguers have fallen into hardship, but not at the hands of those in charge. Not even due to lack of children involved.

A loss of $15,000 to $20,000 has befallen the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League at the hands of an arsonist. On Aug. 30, the little league organization was the victim of arson, as determined by fire investigators, when fire destroyed an open-air pavilion and attached concession stand, said Lindsay Miller, secretary for the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League.

"The fire not only destroyed the open-air pavilion but also our concession stand that was attached to the pavilion. Everything in the concession stand was completely destroyed," Miller said. "The smoke from the heavy fire continued into the back off the building, which is where all of the equipment is. This is also where all the uniforms, and supplies were kept."

With the organization's equipment and concessions destroyed by the blaze and smoke, the community is rallying to support the kids who have counted on the Mattydale-Hinsdale Little League for activity and a way to form friendships. Many businesses have taken up collections or are offering help in forms of equipment donations.

"At this time our organization is looking for donations of any kind. We are accepting monetary donations at several businesses around the Mattydale area, also at ZeroDraft in Mattydale," Miller said.

The organization is in need of equipment donations - anything from baseball equipment bags, batting helmets, catchers gear, bases and bats. If people are interested in donating kitchen supplies for the concessions area, appliances like a refrigerator and freezer unit, microwave and fryers are all welcome.

"No donation is too small. We are so appreciative of all," Miller said.

To aid the efforts, ZeroDraft, located at 2824 LeMoyne Ave. in Mattydale, is a drop off point for donations. The community can drop off monetary donations or equipment at the office, said Cynthia DiFlorio, marketing manager for ZeroDraft.

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