In Toro’s six-year partnership with the Minnesota Twins organization, expertise, volunteers and equipment were combined to rebuild community baseball fields in the Twin Cities.Each year, one venue is selected, they determine the scope of the project and donate $20,000 ($10,000 from Toro and $10,000 from the Twins Community Fund) for improvements. Typical projects can include anything from rebuilding backstops to putting sod in the infield and fencing.
For 2015, the four Kent Hrbek Youth Baseball Fields in Bloomington, Minnesota were selected. The project included rebuilding the mounds, re-sodding, adding ag lime and trimming three of the four fields over a two-day period (one prep day and one build day).
On prep day, about 20 volunteers helped get the site ready including Twins head greenskeeper Larry DiVito. Then on build day, DiVito and a portion of his crew joined approximately 80 volunteers (40 from Toro and 40 from the Minnesota Twins staff) to transform the fields.
“Larry DiVito takes his role very seriously—he wants that field to look like Target Field,” says Judson McNeil, President, Toro Foundation Giving Program and Community Relations. “When we leave, he’s built a mound that could be on a professional field.”
For each project, Toro also provides the equipment needed to complete the renovations. “It’s always rewarding for us to see our products being used to make a difference,” adds McNeil. “On build day, you’ll see people driving Toro Workman vehicles around, mowing with a Groundsmaster, and dragging the infield with a Sand Pro. It’s a lot of fun.”