The administration is assuring residents that the decision to consolidate sports programming at the two athletic complexes in no way means the parks themselves will disappear.
Usage of the neighborhood ballparks has dropped considerably over the past decade or so, which has the Parks & Recreation Department looking to scale back in those parks and focus on the well-used complexes at Noel Field and Alcombright Athletic Complex.
Corey Bishop, co-owner of Bishop West Real Estate, said after Atlantis Equipment donated and installed a backdrop fence on the softball field, he thought there was more to be done.
"They bought the backdrop and I was standing out there while they were installing it," Bishop said. "I looked around and we had lights and a lit scoreboard but our buildings were deplorable. It was embarrassing."
The first round of improvements to the newly named Buddy Pellerin Field at Clapp Park is set for this summer.
The Parks Commission gave the group heading the effort the Okay to order a scoreboard and to continue planning for a number of other additions and changes to the field. The group has already raised $20,000 and has set a goal of a quarter of a million to make four phases worth of improvements to the ballfield.
The committee behind the naming of Buddy Pellerin Baseball Field at Clapp Park has set a goal of raising $250,000 in the next three years to improve the ballfield.
The Parks Commission in April unanimously approved renaming the Clapp Park ballfield after longtime baseball coach George "Buddy" Pellerin. The committee for the Clapp Park Project had applied for the naming and presented the commission more than 150 letters of support.