Local Batting Cages Affected by Pandemic Starts GoFundMe
By Jenna-Lee Neff -
Tuesday May 18, 2021
MESA, Ariz. â€“ The landmark and veteran-owned Home Run Stadium Batting Cages have been serving the East Valley community at the same location for over 35 years. But now they are turning to the community they love for help with much needed repairs on the cages and the facility.
Because of a series of events causing traffic to the business to dwindle over the past several years, Home Run Stadium has fallen behind on costly but needed routine repairs on the cages and facility. Owner Roc Rothchild says it has been a series of unfortunate timing, but that his goal is to get the cages back on track to continue serving the community for many years.
Complications for the batting cages began in 2017, when Metro Phoenix Light Rail started construction on an expansion along Main Street that took the street down to a single lane in some places.
â€œLike many of our neighbors, we saw a decrease in traffic,â€ says Rothchild. â€œOur revenue dropped over 50 percent compared to years past.â€
Construction concluded in May 2019, and Rothchild says business began to return to the area.
â€œIt was the blessing we needed to start the return to normal,â€ he shares. â€œWe eagerly looked forward to our Spring 2020 season, where spring training and little league would bring our revenues back up.â€
Rothchild explains that spring is where the business generates about half of its earnings each year, and the 2020 season would give them the boost they needed to get back on track after the long-term construction.
But the COVID-19 pandemic was spreading rapidly by the spring season, having a devastating ripple effect when it caused many sports to delay or cancel their seasons entirely. When they vitally needed the spring season revenue, earnings for the cages dropped more than 80 percent and remained that way through the rest of 2020.
Rothchild says some repairs he would like to make with the funding include replacing baseballs and softballs, repairing netting on the cages, patching the parking lot, and repairing the asphalt inside of the cages. Other items include repairing the pitching machines, repairing the storefront sign, and generating the funds needed for advertising and marketing.
â€œOur commitment to the community is that through these funds, we will be able to make these needed repairs and continue operations,â€ he explains. â€œBecause the community is so very important to us, any funds over and above what is needed to complete the needed repairs will be donated to local little leagues and veteran non-profit organizations in the East Valley.â€
Those interested in donating to the restoration of the cages can do so by visiting https://gofund.me/16ad0fb6. Rothchild says any help is appreciated, from donations to sharing the fundraiser to spread the word.
For more information, visit http://www.mesabattingcages.com. To keep up with the latest news and updates, follow on Facebook at Home Run Stadium Batting Cages and Twitter at @HomeRunStadium.