To the editor:
I have worked with the different local sports associations and the City of Marshall for many years as they have hosted an extensive amount of youth baseball and softball tournaments. Marshall does a wonderful job hosting these events, but Marshall has outgrown facilities in terms of amenities, quantity and specifications to the point where we have to use a special deader ball because of short fences. Obviously the players do not like this.
Also, Marshall's ability to continue to generate sports tourism dollars is being diminished by both the size of your fields and unusual linear layout which negatively impacts attendance and concessions sales at facilities.
It would be a shame to drop Marshall from our tournament rotation. We recognize Marshall is somewhat "remote" location and realize that makes tournaments even more important to your community. People don't arrive in Marshall by accident. Your planned new sports facility and competition level fields would serve you well in future tournament bids.
Good luck in your pursuit of new facilities and may your vote on Nov. 6 be successful.
Perry Coonce, executive director, Minnesota Sports Federation State Softball Commissioner