For our 1 year anniversary, my wife and I decided to spend the weekend in Block Island. Block Island is a beautiful Rhode Island destination any time of year, especially in the summer months. The beaches, the restaurants, the simple life, natural beauty all around the island – these are just some of the reasons we go back every chance we can. We have taken several trips over there over the years with our kids as well and there is a ton to do, no matter what age you are.
I was curious about Little League® or youth baseball programs and/or other organized baseball programs on Block Island, so I did some research online. Not much to speak of but I did find an interesting letter to the editor of the Block Island Times. It was written by Cindy Lemon, an assistant in the Block Island Recreation Department. You can read that letter by clicking this link – Block Island Times Letter. The letter is a thank you to the Closter family for allowing their farm land to be used as a baseball field over the year. So, Block Island youth baseball players could have the opportunity to learn the game of baseball. It was a really cool letter to read and an interesting piece of baseball history in Block Island.
I did get to speak with David Sniffen of the Recreation Department about baseball on Block Island. The Block Island School has K through 5th graders participate in Little League® baseball programs, although the number of players for each level can be a bit of challenge due to the minuscule year round population of Block Island. According to the Town’s website, their youth baseball season runs from April until the about the middle of June. And the Block School’s High School baseball team, called the Hurricanes, plays a full interscholastic league schedule every spring as well. Both the younger players and the high school baseball team now play at Heinz Field.
Heinz Field is a gorgeous sports complex located off Old Center Rd, just past the Block Island State Airport. It features two main fields, one traditional baseball field (grass infield) and one softball field(dirt infield). On the front left corner of Heinz Field, near the parking lot, there was a backstop which I’m assuming was used for youth baseball programs. There are stone walls and natural landscape surrounding Heinz Field, which give it a real cool, intimate feel. I actually watched a few planes take off and land while I was visiting Heinz. I had stopped a local Block Islander earlier in the day to ask her about Heinz Field and her comment was “Oh the Field of Dreams park? Yes, we love that field.”
Heinz Field is a decent bike ride from the ferry and main downtown area. If you are physically fit, go for it. Otherwise, take a cab ride or your own personal vehicle out Old Town Rd to Center Rd to Old Center Rd then right onto the entrance for Heinz Field. There is ample parking there and the view is just spectacular. You would need to check on the field availability with the Town of New Shoreham Recreation Department, before using the field itself. But, for a visit and to see that baseball is alive in Block Island, that was really cool for me. Thanks again to David and the Town of New Shoreham Recreation Department and my wife for allowing me 5 minutes of our weekend to see this beautiful baseball field.