In Barrington, local sports leagues deserve priority

Letter to the Editor - stockimage

To the editor:

Dear friends and supporters of Barrington sports and recreation, on Monday, Sept. 10, the Barrington Town Council will include on their agenda a discussion and vote pertaining to field use in the Town of Barrington.

Up for consideration is whether or not Barrington programs should receive priority use of fields within our town. As president of Barrington Little League I say “yes.”

Please attend this meeting or send your expressions of support to the town council and parks and recreation commission. Barrington residents, Barrington taxpayers and Barrington sports and recreation participants (who are required to include a field maintenance fee as part of their participation fee) should have priority access to baseball fields in Barrington.

To share our field resources with outside programs is not a bad thing but outside programs should receive inclusion only after all in town program needs are met.

Having recently attended the Aug. 9 parks and recreation meeting, communicated with the town council liaison to parks and recreation, along with our town manager and director of recreation, it is clear that Barrington shares fields with outside programs which causes conflict for local teams who need and deserve access.

Speaking strictly on behalf of baseball, our fields are utilized by two Junior Legion teams: one from Riverside without Barrington players on the roster and a second Junior Legion team with roughly 75 percent Barrington players. Both use Barrington High School fields and both receive priority for their use. Barrington Little League has been unable to secure the high school fields at any time for Barrington Junior or Barrington Senior All Star Teams.

Despite being offered and provided with field use on Sundays a Portsmouth-based AAU program is seeking more access to Barrington fields. Their dissatisfaction with access led to their direct plea to a Barrington Town Council member and attendance by an AAU representative at the most recent parks & recreation meeting seeking better access to Barrington fields.

Priority access for Barrington players and teams makes sense.

Players from Barrington pay a fee to participate, they pay a fee for field maintenance, and their caregivers pay Barrington taxes. Coaches, managers and team volunteers are Barrington residents who dedicate their time to these programs that we are fortunate to be able to offer within our community.

We can and do, as a community, offer access to our fields and other resources to outside programs. All we ask is for established Barrington leagues and school sports teams to have first priority over fields in town.

Thank you to the parks & recreation commission, town manager Peter DeAngelis and recreation director John Taylor for your helpful communication.

Maria DiRe

Barrington

Ms. DiRe is president of Barrington Little

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