Members of the West Chester Adult Baseball League found themselves temporarily homeless in June after a borough council vote ousted them from their ballfield at Hoopes Park. Both sides say they are working toward finding a solution to the situation.
The West Chester Borough Council voted unanimously to revoke the league’s access to the park after reports of rowdy behavior from league teams, including urinating in the nearby woods and leaving trash behind after games.
The WCABL also allegedly built a concrete staircase in the park without proper approval; additionally, the league allegedly used municipal water to irrigate the field without getting permission first.
The league’s 2023 schedule shows every matchup having taken place at Hoopes Park until June 22. All matches through the end of July have been moved elsewhere.
Charlie Cooper, the league president, admitted the situation is “unfortunate.”
“We’re currently working with the borough regarding a new agreement,” Cooper told DVJournal.
“For the time being, all league games have been rescheduled at local fields with the hopes that a new agreement can be reached in the very near future,” he added. The league has about 240 adult players, he said.
Asked if the council seemed amenable to working out a new agreement, Cooper said, “It seems that way.”
“It’s not necessarily the council we’re dealing with right now; it’s the borough,” he admitted, saying the league and the borough are hammering out details of a revised agreement. “Then the council has to ratify it,” he said.
Cooper conceded claims that ballplayers using the nearby woods’ bathroom are accurate.
“I would say people have peed in the woods,” he said. He explained that the Porta Potty supplied by the council was not conveniently located. “They put it really far from the field.”
“That’s being resolved with adding a second Porta Potty near the field,” he added.
Michael Stefano, president of the West Chester Borough Council, said local officials are likewise hopeful about a new agreement shortly.
“West Chester Borough management has met with the Baseball League leadership in the days following the council meeting,” Stefano told DVJournal. “They have already come up with a plan that is being looked over by both sides.”
“We are hopeful to come up with an agreement that addresses all concerns so we can move forward,” he said.
The league was founded in 1956 and currently has eight teams on its roster.