“Howie’s Field of Dreams” is a Bambino Buddy Ball field to be built at Roger Allen Park in Rochester, NH, where young players with physical and/or mental challenges can enjoy playing the game of baseball.
When Howard “Howie” Seckendorf became the 50th president of the Rochester Rotary Club in July 2009, he had the desire to complete a major project in the city which would benefit not only Rochester residents, but those of surrounding communities as well. He learned of a special kind of baseball field that was made of a rubberized surface, one where players with physical and/or mental challenges could play. A field where a player could fall down and not be injured. Where any young player, despite their physical or mental challenges, could experience the joy of playing baseball. Being a lifelong and avid fan of the game, Howie thought this would be the perfect project for the Rotary Club of Rochester to initiate during his presidency.
Sadly, he would not have the time to bring this dream to fruition, as he tragically suffered a fatal heart attack in November 2009. In honor and in tribute to his memory, the Rotary Club of Rochester, with the tireless support of his widow Kim and other family members, is committed to making his dream come true with the construction of “Howie’s Field of Dreams.”
To date, through partnership with Rochester’s Roger Allen Recreation Association and Roger Allen Baseball, the assistance of many dedicated volunteers, and the generous in-kind donations of several local businesses, the location for the field has been cleared and leveled in preparation for construction. Several events have been successful in raising funds to augment the thousands collected through memorial contributions and in total approximately $80,000 has been raised (through Feb. 2011) for the project.
The steering committee estimates that the total cost of the project will eventually exceed $300,000 and continues to work for grant funding, corporate sponsorships, in-kind donations of materials and labor, and planning various community fundraising events.