Saxon baseball foundation raising money to prevent vandalism at Gilmore Field

Supporters of South Salem High School’s baseball team hope to raise $50,000 for field upgrades after teens severely damaged the field Monday night.

A GoFundMe launched Wednesday afternoon will benefit the South Salem Saxon Baseball Foundation, a nonprofit booster organization.

“We are very discouraged by what occurred last Monday, December 5th, at Gilmore Field. I’ve been in this community for 30 years and witnessed many coaches, players, parents, and community members invest their time, energy, equipment, and money to help keep Gilmore Field a beautiful and maintained baseball complex used almost year-round,” foundation President Dan Farrington wrote on the fundraiser.

Max Price, South Salem’s baseball coach, said on Twitter the money would go toward security measures to help prevent future vandalism, as well as general field upgrades.

Police said the damage was caused by two teen boys who drove onto the field Monday evening. Their truck high-centered and got stuck as they were trying to get it back over the berm.

Police released the teens, both 16, to the custody of their parents and referred to the Marion County Juvenile Department on charges of first-degree criminal mischief, according to Salem police spokeswoman Angela Hedrick.

The district did not have an estimate of the amount it would take to repair the damage as of Thursday morning, spokesman Aaron Harada said. He said the field is typically used starting in late February.

Donors had contributed $2,065 toward the fundraiser as of Thursday afternoon.

Contact reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

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Rachel Alexander is Salem Reporter’s managing editor. She joined Salem Reporter when it was founded in 2018 and covers city news, education, nonprofits and a little bit of everything else. She’s been a journalist in Oregon and Washington for a decade. Outside of work, she’s a skater and board member with Salem’s Cherry City Roller Derby and can often be found with her nose buried in a book.