Baseball will be a year-round sport in Penticton with new practice facility | infonews
11 September 2022 – 12:30
South Okanagan baseball players will be able to take their game to the next level once a new indoor practice facility opens in Penticton.
Athletes can already train indoors for baseball in Penticton, but only at facilities owned by other organizations, such as the Penticton Soccer Club.
“Having our own facility will make a huge difference,” said Josh Snider, manager of baseball and softball operations at Grand Slam Baseball Okanagan. “We have to show up while youth football is going on and blow up the batting cages with shop vacuums.”
It’s not realistic to play ball outdoors in Penticton during the winter and even in the summer the players are still at the mercy of rain and extreme heat.
“Being able to walk in and flip a switch and move the cages, and be able to access them whenever we want, is going to make the biggest difference in the world,” Snider says.
READ MORE: Massive indoor baseball facility for the South Okanagan
Beyond what it can offer local competitive players, the facility is expected to be used by visiting teams, traveling athletes and local recreational players. Beyond the practice facilities, there will also be virtual games played with people from across North America.
Although baseball is a very mature sport, it has recently grown in popularity in the South Okanagan.
“We’re starting to see a big increase in high performance baseball as softball grows as well,” Snider said. “It’s partly because of the Blue Jays, as much as it hurts me to say that because I’m a Mariners fan. They’re a fun, young and exciting team that’s on TV every night – something Canadians can watch.
Edgar Yost, the man who planned the facility, had asked the city for permission to rezone the property at 1603 Dartmouth Rd. and the rezoning was approved this week.
Yost hopes the building will be open to the public next year.
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