Special Photo: These classic cars are a sampling of what will be on display at the Lets Make a Miracle Car and Bike Show on Aug. 4.
COVINGTON — August is an eventful month for Miracle League of Newton County. The nonprofit spearheading the construction of a baseball field for special-needs children will at last break ground on the project and host several fundraisers.
Although $1.5 million in SPLOST dollars have been allocated to construction costs, “It’s still a $2 million project,” said Miracle League consultant Tamara Richardson.
While labor supplied by the Georgia Department of Corrections could save on costs by up to 40 percent, “We won’t know (the cost) for sure until we’re done. We’re raising as much as we can to get as close to $2 million in the bank,” she said.
If funds raised exceed construction costs, the remaining money will be used for operations, she said, adding that the operating budget is estimated to be $22,000 a year for field maintenance, lighting and other costs. Richardson also noted that SPLOST money can by law only go toward construction costs, not operations.
Once the program is running, the nonprofit hopes to get sponsors to cover the $50 per player participation fee, Richardson said.
“I’m sure we’ll keep doing fundraisers once we’re up and running to fund programming and operational costs,” she said. Also, she said the amount of money raised will determine the size and quality of the playground that is included in the project, to be used by children of all abilities.
First up on the organization’s busy schedule in August is the 3rd annual Let’s Make a Miracle Car and Bike Show on Saturday, Aug. 4, at Turner Lake Complex at 6185 Turner Lake Road. The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Both vintage and newer cars and motorcycles will be on display. Last year’s event drew about 95 participants. Registration is $20 per vehicle the day of the event. For more information, go to www.covingtoncarshow.com. Awards will be handed out to the top 50 and 10 best of class and a best of show will be given.
The car show is the same day that the Dixie Boys World Series gets under way at City Pond Park.
“Come to the car show and then go watch some great baseball,” Richardson said.
Miracle League will also have a presence at the Dixie Boys events, hosting a 50-50 raffle at each game. A ticket is $1 and half the pot goes to the winner with half going to Miracle League.
For the second consecutive year, Miracle Field of Newton County and the Newton County Recreation Commission are hosting the Miracle League Classic Open Baseball Tournament at City Pond Park. The event is open to traveling teams with players ages 8 to 14 and takes place Aug. 24-26. Last year’s event drew 17 teams and raised $8,600.
In addition to entry fees, Miracle League gets to keep a portion of concession sales.
Registration is $350 per team, or $325 if received by Aug. 17. To register, visit www.newtonrecreation.com or call 770-786-4373, ext. 54.
Groundbreaking on the Miracle Field will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 21, and the public is invited to attend. The field will be constructed at City Pond Park, with work to begin in September and expected to take eight to 10 months to complete.