What is the Miracle League of Southwestern Pennsylvania?
The Miracle League of Southwestern Pennsylvania is an organized baseball league for special needs children and adults which enables these children and adults to develop socialization skills and have fun by playing baseball at a field specially designed for them. The Miracle League of Southwestern Pennsylvania is a registered 501(c)(3) charity founded in 2007. The field is at the Dick’s Sporting Goods Sportsplex at Graham Park in Cranberry Township. Opening Day for the Miracle League was scheduled for May 16, 2009. The national Miracle League organization was started in Conyers, Georgia in 1997 and since then more than 90 Miracle League fields have been built all over the country and another 100 are under construction or in various stages of development.
My child has never played baseball or any other sport; can he or she participate in this league?
Every child and adult, no matter his or her level of ability, can participate in the Miracle League of Southwestern Pennsylvania. The Miracle League is made up of three divisions to allow for players of varying ability and age. For more information on the three divisions in the Miracle League go to the Play page.
Where are the games be played and when?
All games are played on the Miracle League Field located in the baseball field complex of the Dick’s Sporting Goods Sportplex at Graham Park in Cranberry Township. Go to the Directions page for specific directions. League games will take place on weekends starting no earlier than 8:00 AM and periodically during the week in the evening. Check back at the website for updates on schedules and league details.
How is the game played? How long is a game?
Typically each game lasts about 75 to 90 minutes. For the Miracle Division, the games are non-competitive in nature, with each player batting, running the bases and scoring each inning. Volunteers called “Buddies” will be assigned to each individual to assist throughout the game. There are no losers in this game, only winners with the score tied at the end of each game. The focus is more on participation than on winning. Go to these links for more information on the Youth Competitive Division and Adult Division.
Do I need to bring anything?
Only yourselves and whatever you require for the care of your child. Before the beginning of each season every participant will receive a shirt and cap that is to be worn at each game. They should bring with them a baseball glove to be used during the the game. A full service concession stand is located near to the field and ADA-compliant restroom facilities and a family changing area are also available.
What are Buddies and how do they help?
Each player will have a “Buddy” at each game. This Buddy is there to protect the player from balls, assist the player in batting and running the bases and to be a friend on and off the field. Depending on the availability and number of Buddies, the plan is to have them assigned to the same child for the whole season. Buddies will be given a Miracle League shirt for their participation. They are expected to arrive 30 minutes before the start of the game and to notify the Miracle League Buddy coordinator at least twenty-four hours prior to the game if they will not be able to make a game. Buddies start at age 12. The siblings, parents, relatives, and friends of players are eligible to be Buddies.
What is the Miracle League field like?
The Miracle League field in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Sportsplex at Graham Park in Cranberry Township is totally handicapped accessible. It has a synthetic surface that allows easy use of wheel chairs, walkers, and other adaptive devices. There are is also convenient access to restrooms and parking. Go to the Miracle Field page for more information.
How can I volunteer?
The Miracle League of Southwestern Pennsylvania needs a variety of volunteers to organize and play games. A typical game needs 40 volunteers to be able to play. Volunteers are needed to be managers, coaches, Buddies, umpires, team parents, and for general help like registration, equipment and field maintenance. Go to the Volunteering page for more information.
Are there registration fees?
We welcome donations to help with the costs of operating the league, the uniforms and equipment. No child will be turned away because of an inability to pay. A nominal registration fee is charge each season. Scholarships are available if you have difficulty paying. The MLSWPA partners with other local ML’s with a centralized registration system at www.MiracleLeagueBaseball.org. Go to MiracleLeagueBaseball.org for more information and to register.
How can I donate to the MLSWPA?
There are several ways you can help. Go to the Donate page of the website for more information.