BERKELEY TOWNSHIP-The Moorage Avenue Park baseball complex in Berkeley Township has been officially renamed to “Leiter Baseball Park” in honor of the Leiter family, whose sons Mark and Al both played Major League Baseball.
The Leiter family has been an active contributor to Little League Softball since the days when the Leiter boys, Al, Mark and their three brothers all played at the complex.
It was the Leiter family’s initial investment of $100,000 donated in the late 1990’s that built the original Leiter Field at the complex.
That donation and the success of the Leiter family in local and professional baseball during the 1990’s sparked a renaissance in local baseball, according Mayor Carmen Amato.
“Today is indeed a great day for Berkeley Township, Berkeley Little League and the Leiter Family,” Amato said. “For the past few months, The Township Administration, with full support of the Township Council, has been working in concert with Berkeley Little League and Al Leiter on transforming Leiter Field into the state of the art Baseball facility you see here today.”
The dedication ceremony began Friday night at 5:30 pm with the singing of the National Anthem by SHelby Morris, Shannon O’Connell, Margaux Ward and Amanda Owens.
“This rededication was made possible by the continuing support of the The Leiter Family and the leadership of Berkeley Little League, led by its President Jon Bentivegna, Vice President’s Dr. Balaji Srinivasan and Jim Burgess, and Buildings and Grounds manager/ project coordinator Glenn Bearden and many, many other dedicated volunteers,” Amato told the crowd of residents and reporters who came to see the dedication. “I congratulate all of you for your ongoing commitment to this project and your steadfast support of youth baseball in Berkeley Township.”
Amato, who also played at the complex as a child and later went on to coach and serve as the league’s Vice President said it was the Leiter family’s initial donation some 35 years ago that raised the bar for local little leaguers in his town.
“The children playing today have greater facilities and opportunities then we did because of that renaissance,” Amato said. ” want to thank The Leiter family for never forgetting their roots, where they started it all. They have shown a true dedication to Berkeley Township Little League from their participation in the organization, to its continued efforts to promote and support youth baseball within the Township.”
Amato was joined by the Berkeley Township Chairman of the Recreation Committee, Councilman Angelo Guadagno; Council President James Byrnes; Council Vice President and Little League coach Tom Grosse; Councilwoman Judy Noonan; Councilwoman Sophia Gingrich; Councilman Keith Buscio and last but not least, Councilman John Bacchione.