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Businesses help Little League keep score

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Next spring the Laconia Little League will be ready for the 2010 season with the addition of the new scoreboard at Colby Field, which was installed on Wednesday afternoon.

Local business leaders and other community members took time on Veterans Day to put up the scoreboard, replacing the previous one that was broken.

Employees from local businesses worked hand-in-hand to bring the scoreboard to its new home, located behind the right field fence at Colby Field. Among those present included employees from Irwin Motors, the company that had purchased the sign and paid for the shipping and handling.

Ron O'Connor, the league's information officer and service manager at Irwin's, was assisting in putting the nuts and bolts together as well as documenting the installation with his own camera. He said he was approached a few months ago and was asked if Irwins would be interested in sponsoring a new scoreboard the league was planning to get.

"I went right up to Peter's [Irwin] office and he did not hesitate to say yes," O'Connor said. "We're glad that we could do this for the community and Irwin has always been supportive."

The old scoreboard was installed in 1997, which replaced an even older scoreboard located in center field that had been there for well over 15 years. Everything from the labor and parts to the removal and disposal of the old scoreboard was taken care of by the local businesses involved in the project. The total cost of the sign, which was picked up by Irwin Motors, was almost $10,000.

The new scoreboard measures 24 feet by seven feet and is divided into thirds. It has a large Laconia Little League emblem on the left third, the scoring and information in the middle and the last third has an Irwin's sponsorship logo. In addition to the normal at-bat count, innings and score, the scoreboard will also have total number of pitches for each team and lights to indicate hits and runs.

Laconia Little League President Mary Nyhan said everyone involved has done a fantastic job in getting what was needed to complete the project. She said O'Connor, along with Bill Salta from Salta Tire, were two steps ahead of the game in the process.

"We didn't even have to ask for help," Nyhan said. "Without the help from everyone here, this wouldn't have happened."

Other businesses helping in the project include Gilbert Block, which donated hardware to mount the sign, Gilford Well, which dug the trench for the electrical wiring, Daniel's Electric, which wired the scoreboard and brought the electrical system to code, and Bonnette, Page and Stone which donated a high-lift fork truck to lift the several hundred-pound scoreboard.

Bonnette, Page & Stone Vice President Jim Cass said BPS cares about the community and contributes whenever it can.

"We try to do a lot for the kids in the community," Cass said.

The Laconia Little League will be having a formal sign dedication ceremony in the spring to open the new season and thank Irwin Motors for its generous donation.