NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) — Summer collegiate baseball could be making its way to New Bern very soon, especially after Monday night’s community input meeting.
Monday night, the Old North State League partnered with the city to host a community input meeting to give New Bern residents a chance to voice their concerns and get questions answered. Both city and league officials said they considered the meeting a success.
Major concerns from citizens included parking for visitors, what happens with foul balls or those knocked out of the park, as well as the fate of the East Carolina Amateur Baseball League, which currently plays at the historic park.
New Bern Mayor Jeffrey Odham said the overall response to summer collegiate baseball has been extremely positive.
“The concerns that folks had have pretty much all been addressed, I think it’s a tremendous opportunity for the city and our citizens in this region really to move forward with something that can better utilize an underutilized field,” Odham said.
Moving forward, the mayor said the Old North State League and Kafer Park will be added as an item to a future meeting agenda for further action to be taken.
Alec Allred, CEO of The Players League, which owns the Old North State League said the response was great.
“I would say there were probably over maybe 50, there wasn’t anybody that publicly spoke that opposed it, and there was a lot of people that publicly spoke and supported it,” Allred said.
Possible changes to Kafer Park include building a grandstand, redoing the dugouts and backstop, moving the outfield fences and improving the playing surface.
For those who missed the meeting, there is an online public input survey. It closes Thursday, August 17. You can find the form linked here.