June 25, 11am
Tee Ball Sculpture Dedication Across from Library
Memories of longtime childhood friendships will be celebrated in Albion June 25 when the Tee-Ball Garden is dedicated. A celebratory statue and plaque will be unveiled at the 11 am ceremony at the South Superior Street location across from the Albion District Library. The address at the t-ball park is 508 S Superior St.
Dedication will coincide with the date that is collectively known as the first organized game using the batting tee which was played on June 25, 1956 in Albion. Plans for the celebration include speakers from some of Coach Jerry Sacharski’s original teams and also his three sons, Mike, David and William.
All former tee-ball players are especially invited to attend this historic event honoring the tee-ball heritage founded by Coach Sacharski.
The legendary beloved coach, teacher and mentor was the city summer recreation director. While organizing summer teams Sacharski noticed a lot of younger boys who wanted to learn to play baseball like their older brothers. It was then he developed a tee to assist young players in hitting the ball and help them learn baseball fundamentals. Others around the country also created tees, but Albion lays claim to the first organized game for the new sport.
To honor this historic coach and the game’s roots this garden is cooperative venture with the Calhoun County Land Bank and the Albion Community Foundation. Money was raised for this art installation through the Restore Our Coke Sign matching Patronicity campaign through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Janet Domingo and Linda Kolmodin were volunteer co-chairs of this fund raising effort.
At Noon, there will be tee-ball games featuring young players and organized by Milton Barnes of Play Right Sports. At 1:00, there will be a T-ball game for “Old-Timers.” Both games will be held at the Victory Park ball field off of Hannah Street near the bottom of the sledding hill.
Milton Barnes, president of Play Right Academy which sponsors tee-ball, Jim Stuart owner of Sterling Books and Brew and John Shedd, longtime community member, are organizing the afternoon events.
PHOTO CAPTION: Legendary Coach Jerry Sacharski shows young Albion player how to hit a baseball off the tee in 1956. A dedication of the new Tee-Ball Garden is scheduled at 11 am June 25 at the site on South Superior Street across from the Albion District Library. Former tee-ball players are especially invited to join the celebration.