Jud Hoff says watching kids play baseball in the Miracle League you can see the “Joy and glee on their faces.” He wants to bring a new field and the opportunity for disabled kids to play baseball to Southwest Michigan.
Hoff is one of the owners of the Dome Sports Center in Schoolcraft, and president of the board of the Southwest Michigan Miracle League. A $1.1-million fundraising campaign is starting to bring a custom designed field in Schoolcraft. It will allow young people with disabilities to play baseball. A fundraising event is being held Saturday May 11th at the Dome Sports Center. Note: In an earlier version of this story, Jud Hoff's name was misspelled, we apologize for the error.
Hoff says the kids who play on the Miracle League fields have the same dreams and desire to play. He says the foundation of sports is “a tremendous place to learn a lot of things about the rest of your life.”
There are Miracle League fields around the U.S. that have strict design guidelines to ensure safety. The closest one is in Grand Rapids. Hoff says retired Portage Parks Director Bill Demming is working with the Southwest Michigan Miracle League. Hoff says the Disability Network of Southwest Michigan has also offered to help.
Hoff says they hope to break ground in the spring of next year. He says once construction begins it shouldn’t take long, so games could begin in the summer of 2020. Hoff says raising the $1.1-million will require community awareness. He says more events beyond Saturday’s in Schoolcraft are likely but haven’t been planned yet.