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ACCOMPLISHMENTS: 30+ Park Restorations, Implementation of After-School Programs, Coordination of Community Events, Thousands of Youth Reached

GOAL: Unite communities and inspire a positive outlet for youth.

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Charitable effort leads to repairs at Tara Hills baseball fields


Paradise Little League field renovations and fundraiser

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Athlete-run nonprofit hopes to reinvigorate Guadalupe's baseball program

  • Miller Brothers Build Baseball Field in Guadalupe
    For the past 3 years, Josh Miller has been volunteering with MTAG. He has led and participated in projects that have taken him to Colombia, the Dominican Republic, and Panama where he helped facilitate baseball field renovations, administered clinics and donated equipment to schools and organizations. ​ In the Miller household, baseball certainly runs in the family. Josh’s older brother, Michael Miller, was drafted in the 9th round by the Boston Red Sox in the 2012 draft. He made his MLB debut with the Red Sox on June 27, 2016, against the Tampa Bay Rays. “Michael has always been my hero, and I admire him for making his dreams come true by playing in the Major Leagues. But, since I have been involved with MTAG I have searched for opportunities to get my brother involved,” Josh said. ​ Josh found this opportunity at a school in Guadalupe, California that had a dilapidated baseball field and after further investigation found out that there were no baseball programs in the town. Guadalupe is a migrant-worker, agricultural town just south of San Luis Obispo. Josh explained, “They don't have youth sports in the city. If they want to play they have to go to a neighboring community which is difficult for a lot of the families. Not only financially, but finding time to make the commute to go to practice or games when they are working 6 days a week is challenging.” Josh immediately enlisted the support of his brother Michael to solve this problem for the town of Guadalupe. Michael said, “I have always been a fan of MTAG, I was excited my brother and I could do a project together.” The two devised a plan to reconstruct the baseball field enlisting the support of locals, businesses and school board supervisors. After long days of petitioning and fundraising, the Miller brothers compiled a team of volunteers to lead the project that included Marshall and Sean Peters, a recent graduate and baseball player at the University of California. The group was able to pitch their ideas to Paul Adler, Phillips 66 Community affairs and relations manager, who sponsored the project. Also, CNN was involved with the project as a film crew was with the MTAG team the entire week following and documenting the story. ​ The team of four spent the week immersed in the community. The long days required hard work including spreading truckloads of dirt, followed by endless hours on a tractor leveling the diamond. Other smaller projects were constructing benches, putting in bases, fixing fences, and painting the backstop. Although there was a lot of work, the group found time to connect with the community in other ways. One day they were up before sunrise to pick strawberries with the locals at a farm. Josh said, “This is something that MTAG takes pride in. Helping out other people in the community helps us build relationships and shows people that we are invested in the community.” Michael also leveraged his Major League status speaking at school assemblies and classrooms, promoting baseball and offering words of encouragement to the wide-eyed children. ​ When reflecting on his experience, Michael said, “It’s really fulfilling to be able to achieve my childhood dream of playing in the MLB, but being able to use that platform to get in front of hundreds of kids is what makes MTAG special. My story is important for me to share because I'm not the biggest guy, so for kids to see that someone who looks like your average Joe walking down the street can achieve their dreams is important. Getting the point across that character is what takes you where you want to be is good for kids to hear. Hearing the importance of respect, determination, hard work, and working with others, everything teachers and parents tell their kids, but hearing it from another source, helps bring it home.” ​ At week's end and successful completion of the field restoration, the group partnered with the Cal Poly Baseball team to offer a free clinic to the kids of Guadalupe. Over 100 people were at the event which has sparked the town’s interest of playing baseball. The Miller brothers continue to frequent the community once a week offering instruction and continuing to develop baseball in Guadalupe.
  • Paradise Little League | Paradise, CA"
    MTAG restores Paradise Little League baseball fields after the fires. Watch video for full story!
  • Shields-Reid Park | Richmond, CA"
    SUMMARY: More Than A Game has engaged the Shields-Reid Community Center staff and North Richmond kids in a joint effort to renovate, maintain, and continue using the Shields-Reid Community Park. The initial objective was to coordinate a community effort to repair the baseball field and host a baseball clinic, but it has turned into a weekly MTAG program with the Shields-Reid staff and 20-30 kids participating each Friday. The continued focus is to enlist local police, fire department, and leaders to run the program with the assistance and coordination from MTAG. With the help of “One Richmond” and Dr. Jay Fitness, the weekly clinic now includes a clean-up and nutrition aspect. The kids are required to pick up trash at the beginning of the clinic and are rewarded with nutritional snacks at the end! In addition to the weekly participation clinic, MTAG’s goal is to sponsor a team from N. Richmond, coached by local parents/coaches, and practice each Friday. OBJECTIVES: -Maintain and continue to use Shields-Reid Park year-round for youth sports related activities and events. -Engage the community leaders, police, and fire departments to run the program with assistance from MTAG. -Sponsor a team to practice, use, and play games at Shields-Reid Park. -Create a sense of park ownership for the kids and community. -Create a mindset of healthy eating habits and regular exercise
  • Nichol Park | Richmond, CA"
    SUMMARY: Nichol Park was the first Richmond project for More Than A Game. We spent a week in Richmond cleaning up the 3 ball fields at Nichol, along with 2 other Little League fields in Richmond. Since that first week in October 2016, MTAG has organized and led two Little League pre-season baseball clinics and cleanup projects, Soulful Softball Sunday, and will be the lead on replacing the infield.. all at Nichol Park! With the collaborative help from Richmond Little League, Richmond-PAL, One Richmond, Love Your Block, Richmond Recreation and Parks, and other local community service organizations, MTAG has played a significant role in restoring Nichol Park as a hub of Richmond sporting activities and events. OBJECTIVES: Help Richmond organizations utilize the park year-round by organizing clinics and cleanup e fforts at Nichol Park. Assist Richmond Little League, Richmond Recreation and Parks, and community volunteer groups to plan regularly scheduled cleanup and repair events. Create a sense of park ownership for the kids and community.
  • Booker T. Anderson Park | Richmond, CA"
    SUMMARY: More Than A Game has been invited to assist with the renovation of Booker T. Anderson Park. Booker T, as it is known, consists of three baseball fields and is located next to Booker T. Anderson Community Center, Stege Elementary School, and a number of apartment complexes. The city of Richmond has granted use of the park to Game Changers, a youth baseball organization run by Thomas Gary. Thomas heard about MTAG thru our work at Nichol Park and Shields-Reid Park and thought we could assist him in his efforts of revitalizing Booker T. The initial objective is to rebuild the three baseball fields, with the assistance of the City of Richmond Recreation and Parks department. Two of the fields have not been used in 20 years and a 3rd one needs some renovations. MTAG, thru its generous partners, will provide the infield mix, lay out the baseball diamonds, set the bases, and provide material and labor to build batter’s boxes and pitching mounds. The second objective is to create a baseball park, with dugouts, backstops, bleachers, utility sheds, and lights that can host baseball games and tournaments for teams of all ages. The third objective is to duplicate the Shields-Reid model and hold baseball regular, weekly baseball clinics and use baseball to build community. OBJECTIVES: -Maintain and continue to use Booker T Anderson park year-round for youth sports related activities and events. -Engage the Booker T. Anderson Community Center staff and kids in the sports clinics. -Engage the community leaders, police, and fire departments to run the sports program with assistance from MTAG. -Create a sense of park ownership for the kids and community. -Create a mindset of healthy eating habits and regular exercise
  • Lefty Gomez Field | Rodeo, CA"
    More Than a Game and the Walnut Creek Crawdads partnered with Phillips 66 to host a free baseball clinic and field restoration at Lefty Gomez Field in Rodeo, California, also deemed Baseball Town USA. Over sixty kids from Rodeo Baseball Association came out to participate in the clinic. Each kid that showed up received a new EvoShield arm sleeve and a Nike belt provided by Lids. The Walnut Creek Crawdads led the children in an instructional clinic, teaching and reinforcing the basics of the game such as catching, throwing, and batting. Then the kids split up into teams playing games and other competitions. While some Crawdads were leading drills, others were helping restore the fields. With the help of Turface Athletics we were able to restore the batters box on Lefty Gomez Field, and we revitalized the 5-6 year-old field adding field conditioner and clearing weeds. At the end of the clinic we had each Crawdad give an award to a player that impacted them in someway. It was a special moment watching our players become mentors to the younger players. With over one hundred people going home with smiles on their faces, it was a truly beautiful day at Lefty Gomez Field.
  • Tara Hills | Richmond, CA"
    Turface Athletics Partners with More Than A Game in its Tara Hills Complex Renovation Turface Athletics, a leader in sports field construction and maintenance, was pleased to donate its field maintenance solutions to the non-profit corporation, More Than A Game (MTAG), in support of its Tara Hills Project. With the help of 30 volunteers, the project repaired four baseball fields at the Tara Hills Complex in San Pablo, Calif., from Wednesday, January 30 to Saturday, February 2, 2019, in order to make them playable and safe for children 12 years and younger in the local community. Turface Athletics provided both field conditioner and mound clay for the cause. Totaling $25,000.00 worth of dirt, paint, bases, machinery rentals, event production and volunteer and kids apparel, the four-day event boasted an extensive to-do list. From the removal of infield weeds, leveling the playing surface with new dirt, applying Turface field conditioner and replacing wood in the dugouts to the washing, painting and repairing of concession stands and bleachers — the Tara Hills Project aimed to unite, educate and empower the San Pablo community. The event concluded with a community celebration, offering music, food games and more. “Turface Athletics is proud to be a partner of this uplifting and influential organization — More Than A Game,” said Jeff Langner, business manager at Turface Athletics. “With the assistance of Ewing Irrigation, we are honored to contribute multiple pallets of essential field maintenance products, helping provide a safe and sustainable environment for the town’s youth.” The company will continue to donate its field maintenance materials in support of the non-profit’s community renovation efforts across the nation.
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