Miracle League delayed until August
May 1, 2020 | Angela Jordan
The Kiwanis Miracle League for young people with disabilities was a great success at Prospect Meadows last year, but the season that was scheduled for this May and June has been canceled due to the corona virus pandemic.
League officials have made plans for a fall campaign that will begin on Saturday, Aug. 22 and run for six weeks, but there will be no games until then.
“I think everybody understands, but they’re pretty disappointed,” said Byron Tabor, the president of the Miracle League. “We feel a little cheated. We got a little taste last year, and now we have to sit around and wait.”
The league attracted 40 players in 2019, ranging in age from 5 through 21. They were assigned to four teams, with Major League replica uniforms and caps. The games were played on the special Miracle Field at Prospect Meadows, with buddies to help the players hit, run and throw.
The smiles and laughter were contagious and heart-warming.
“We had a great time,” said Tabor. “The games were well-attended. We were turning people away by the end of the year, as far as them wanting to be buddies. We had more buddies than kids.”
There was an awards banquet after the season at Hunters Ridge Golf Course, with ribbons and medals presented to the players.
“The kids who showed up for that had a great time,” said Tabor. “Everybody is pretty happy the way things turned out.”
League officials anticipated having six teams this May and June, with approximately 55 players. They expect at least six teams when the new season begins in August, with perhaps eight if enough families enroll.
“Growth is good,” said Tabor. “We want to handle as many kids as we can. The ultimate goal will be 16 teams and we’ll play eight games each Saturday. That’s the ultimate.”
The Miracle League is not just for families in Marion and Cedar Rapids. There also are players from Coggon, Fairfax, Mount Vernon, Hiawatha, Walker, Robins, Toddville, Atkins and even Cedar Falls.
The Kiwanis Clubs that sponsor the league will be holding a fundraising Bar-B-Que on Saturday, Aug. 15 at the city park in downtown Marion, one week before the season begins.
Families that would like to join the Kiwanis Miracle League, as well as buddies, can register by going to ProspectMeadows.com. Click on Programs on the home page and click on the Miracle League.