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Milwaukee youth organizations benefit from Baseball Tomorrow Fund grant
Grant provided as part of National Youth Baseball Equipment Collection Program

In support of the ongoing commitment from Major League Baseball, its Clubs and the players to increase opportunities for youth participation in baseball and softball, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund is awarding grants totaling $5,000 to Beckum Stapleton Little League and Felix Mantilla Little League. In addition to the Baseball Tomorrow Fund grants, the Milwaukee Brewers will donate $2,500 to the Bayview Red Cats Little League. The grants are being awarded in conjunction with the national baseball equipment collection program supported by the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, which includes the Milwaukee Brewers upcoming local collection drive.

The Brewers will collect new and used equipment at Miller Park July 29-31 for donation to Beckum Stapleton Little League, Felix Mantilla Little League and Bayview Red Cats Little League. Cathy Bradley, executive director of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund, and Damian Miller, Milwaukee Brewers catcher, will present ceremonial checks for $2,500, to each of the three Little League programs during a pre-game ceremony at Miller Park on Saturday, July 30th, prior to the Brewers game against the San Francisco Giants at 6:05 pm (CDT). This collection drive is part of a larger, season-long charity drive program sponsored by the Brewers.

This marks the first year the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has teamed with Major League Baseball Clubs to augment their existing equipment collection programs and to help facilitate the creation of new programs. As part of the program, participating Clubs collect new and used equipment at their ballparks prior to a selected home game(s) and donate the equipment to a local youth baseball or softball organization chosen by the Club. In support of the initiative, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund awards a total of $5,000 to youth baseball or softball organizations in each participating market. Baseball Tomorrow Fund grants will be used to purchase new equipment for the 2006 season.

Beckum Stapleton Little League has been serving generations of young African-American baseball players for more than 40 years. In 2002, the Little League benefited from a $50,000 Baseball Tomorrow Fund grant to the Milwaukee Parks Foundation, Inc. The grant enabled the construction of the James W. Beckum Indoor Baseball Practice Facility, which allows the League to provide year-round baseball training. Felix Mantilla Little League was formed and named in honor of former Milwaukee Braves player Felix Mantilla and the League serves Milwaukee's growing Latino youth population. The Bay View Area Red Cats Little League was formed in the spring of 1974 and has provided a home for baseball for the children of factory workers on Milwaukee's near Southside for many years.

The Baseball Tomorrow Fund, created to promote and enhance the growth of baseball throughout the world, provides funding for programs, field improvements and equipment purchases that encourage and maintain youth participation in baseball and softball. Since its inception in 1999, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund has awarded grants totaling more than $8.5 million. These grants have benefited 100,000 children participating in more than 170 youth baseball and softball programs across the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, U.S. Virgin Islands and Europe.