BENEFITING: RECKLESS KELLY CHARITABLE YOUTH FOUNDATION
EVENT DATE: May 31, 2015
The Reckless Kelly Charitable Youth Foundation's mission is to serve disadvantaged and under privileged youth in the greater Austin, Texas area including the promotion of amateur, youth, and handicapped sports with the emphasis on little league baseball and softball. Our objective is to develop character and sportsmanship, and promote the betterment of physical and social wellbeing by encouraging and fostering participation in the sport at all levels of age and activity. To espouse the virtues of character, courage and loyalty in developing superior citizens by providing underprivileged youth the opportunity to participate in organized sports that may not be able to otherwise.
The 7th annual Reckless Kelly Celebrity Softball Jam is a family-friendly event bringing together an all-star group of musicians, celebrities and pro athletes for a softball game followed by a postgame concert on 2 stages in centerfield. Proceeds will help cover the ongoing costs of an ambitious $300,000 renovation project for East Austin's Mabson Field, including a professional quality artificial turf playing surface which was revealed earlier this week. The field serves boys and girls ages 4-12 through RBI Austin and the Greater East Austin Youth Association.
Prior to this project, East Austin did not have a youth baseball field the community could take pride in. East Austin youth fields are rundown and in many cases unsafe to play on. In 2012, the local youth baseball/softball league at Mabson Field struggled to find enough players to have even one or two teams in each age division. Furthermore, 97% of families in the surrounding community are considered economically disadvantaged and over half are single-parent homes. This has led to a severe shortfall of positive adult guidance for youth in this community.
Through this Mabson Field project, Reckless Kelly believes baseball/softball will move from its former state of relative insignificance in the East Austin community to a prominent, life-changing center for youth and families in this under-resourced, yet high potential area of Austin. The field will be a true gem and bring excitement and interest back to the game in East Austin like it hasn't seen in decades - possibly since the time Jackie Robinson played at the adjacent college baseball field, Downs Field.
This new Mabson Field will provide incredible support and added momentum to RBI Austin's existing initiative to revive youth baseball and softball in East Austin. RBI clinics with MLB players and youth baseball/softball leagues at this new artificial turf baseball field will greatly increase the number of East Austin youth playing baseball and softball. Around 300 East Austin youth will be affected by this project initially and we expect that number to grow to over 1,000 within five years of project completion. Correspondingly, hundreds of East Austin youth will be connected to RBI coaches and mentors who will empower these youth to lead the transformation of this community.
Volunteer Artists this year include: JACK INGRAM, KEVIN FOWLER, CODY CANADA & THE DEPARTED, KYLE PARK, GEORGE DEVORE, SHINYRIBS, RANDY ROGERS, MIDNIGHT RIVER CHOIR, THE PETERSON BROTHERS, UNCLE LUCIUS, WHISKEY MYERS, WILLIAM CLARK GREEN, KELLEY MCKWEE
Volunteer Athletes this year Include: JOSH BECKETT (Florida Marlins, Boston Red Sox, LA Dodgers), CAT OSTERMAN (2004 & 2008 Olympic Games), GREG SWINDELL (University of Texas & Diamons Backs), AHMAD BROOKS (University of Texas Football & Buffalo Bills), ADAM DUNN (2x MLB All-Star), RANDY WELLS (Cubs), BROOKS KIESCHNICK (Cubs, Reds Rockies), GLENN WILSON SR (Philly's), KASEY STUDDARD (UT football).
MEDIA PARTNERS / PLAYERS INCLUDE:
Charlie Hodge, Chris Mosser, Kevin Connor, Kirsten Winquist, B-Doe, Eric Raines, Andy Langer , and Erin Hogan