Open that box of Cracker Jack and play ball because the Greater Birmingham Area is celebrating the opening of an all-new Miracle League Field at Wald Park in Vestavia Hills.
The Miracle League Field held its grand opening on Sunday, November 15. It was made possible after the Vestavia Hills Parks and Recreation Foundation raised $450K—a fundraising initiative that began in 2018.
Who is The Miracle League?
Imagine a baseball field. You probably picture some dirt, grass and bases. Maybe even some players. But for kids with disabilities, a baseball field can look like an obstacle and cause feelings of exclusion.
Enter The Miracle League.
As a 501c3 nonprofit, the organization gives children with disabilities the chance to play baseball just like everyone else. How? By building rubberized baseball fields that allow kids to play regardless of their abilities.
About the Miracle Field
The new Miracle Field is located at Wald Park in Vestavia Hills and is completely handicap friendly. It also includes a handicap-friendly playground.
Helping design and build the field and playground was:
“The redesign of Wald Park was focused on creating a greater sense of community and connectivity within the existing park. The centerpiece of the baseball field renovations was the new Miracle League Field, which acts as the anchor for baseball within the new complex. It was important to showcase the community’s commitment to inclusivity by placing the Miracle League athletes in the heart of the park.”Matt Foley, Leed AP Principal Architect, Williams Blackstock Architects
To help athletes, the Miracle League uses a buddy system that pairs each player with an able-bodied peer.
Miracle League teams play on a custom-designed, rubberized turf field that accommodates wheelchairs and other assertive devices while helping to prevent injuries.
The field also includes wheelchair accessible stands and electrical outlets for oxygen tanks and battery-operated wheelchairs.
What about the handicap-friendly playground?
The lower playground at City of Vestavia Hills Wald Park features playground equipment specifically designed for children with disabilities.
Here’s a look at what it features:
- GameTime Modern City play structure
- Sensory Wave Climber
- GT Symphony musical equipment
- Rox All see-saw and swings