After an arsonist damaged the Liverpool Girls Softball fields in Salina last July, a fundraiser to support its reconstruction and repairs was held on Aug. 5 at Electronics Park. (Photo courtesy of LGSL)
After an arson fire left nearly $20,000 in damages to parts of the Liverpool Girls Softball League (LGSL) fields last July, a fundraiser to help pay for the damages was held during the second annual Jamie Bailer Day at Electronics Park — raising nearly $3,000 in donations to support reconstruction and replacements after the devastation.
“We had a great turn out, despite the really hot temperature,” said Denise Murray, LGSL board member and former league president. “Today’s fundraising efforts are the beginning of several.”
Jaimie Bailer Day — which commemorates the life of the late Jamie Bailer, the mother of three girls who played on the LGSL fields, held on the first Sunday of every August — raised in $2,867.25 in donations during its fundraiser on Sunday with softball games for all ages, carnival games, music, food and the infamous lemonade stand.
“These young ladies [running the lemonade stand] have raised a total of $467 from their stand on three different occasions,” said Murray.
“It’s a great start with the expectation of more checks in the mail this week since many couldn’t attend today for various reasons,” she added.
Softball games began at 10 a.m. and ran through 2:30 p.m., with a game for grades K through fourth, fifth through seventh, seventh through ninth and an alumni and senior division game, better known as the Jaimie Bailer Memorial Game, at 2:30 p.m. Fastrac also grilled food to be donated during the event as well.
At around 5:30 a.m. on July 2, a fire was discovered on the LGSL fields, damaging the building’s roof, bathrooms, electrical wiring, drywall, asphalt and exterior brick. Ceiling fans and light fixtures inside the structure will also need to be replaced.
The arson fire caused somewhere between $15,000 to $20,000 in damages to the concession stand and bathrooms at their fields at Electronics Park.
The alleged suspect in the arson, Thomas Cerio, 58, of Trivet Drive North, is accused of setting several fires in the town of Salina. The first was at the Syracuse Indoor Sports Center on Hopkins Road on May 28.
Cerio is alleged to have set three more the night of July 1 and the early morning of July 2, including the one at the LGSL field. Cerio was charged with arson in the third degree and criminal mischief in the second degree.
The damage is particularly costly since the league does not have insurance, and all repair costs for now have to be paid out of pocket or through donations.
Since the incident, donations have poured in from former players, residents and several local businesses, including TPM Contractors, which provided dumpsters, and Avery Renovations, a regular team sponsor during the softball season, which secured the facility and did a preliminary cleanup on July 4.
The Liverpool Girls Softball League is still receiving donations. To donate or learn more about the league, visit its Facebook page. Checks can be mailed to Liverpool Girls Softball League, P.O. Box 645, Liverpool, NY 13088. Write “Vandalism” or “Field repairs” in the memo line.