Reds Community Fund debuts new infield at Marty Brennaman Field

April 29th, 2024

A busy month of field renovations for the Reds Community Fund (RCF) concluded with the dedication of Marty Brennaman Field and its new turf infield at Juilfs Park in Anderson Township on Saturday.

Named in honor of Reds Hall of Fame broadcaster Marty Brennaman when the field was originally unveiled in 2008, Marty Brennaman Field underwent significant upgrades in '24, highlighted by the addition of a turf infield. The recent ribbon cutting ceremony was held to debut the new field, the third one to be dedicated by the RCF this month.

“Driving over here, I was reminding myself that 2008 seems almost like a week ago, and here we are doing it again,” Brennaman said. “The field is incredibly beautiful. Artificial turf is going to mean so much to these folks out here with bad weather that we are used to getting this time of the year. It’s a tremendous coming together of people who care about youth baseball.”

Speakers at the event included Brennaman, Reds President and COO Phil Castellini, Executive Director of Anderson Parks District Ken Kushner and Executive Director of the Reds Community Fund Charley Frank. Also in attendance were Mark Schueler, an Anderson Township Little League coach and board member who works as the Reds vice president of ticket sales, and Joe Zerhusen, the Reds public address announcer.

The project was made possible thanks to an Anderson Parks District capital levy that passed in November 2023. Along with the Reds and Anderson Park District, project partners included Anderson Township Youth Sports, the Juilfs Foundation, Kid Glove and The Motz Group.

“These improvements are incredible,” Kushner said. “Here we are on April 27, and our community gets to play on an infield that was only a dream last November. Projects move this fast because there’s no inaction. People want to make things happen. It’s amazing how people got together to put this field out here.”

The Anderson Aces 11U Red team and Anderson Aces 12U team christened the new infield. (Photo credit: Reds)

Kushner alluded to one of the unique aspects of this project: the speed at which it was completed. After the levy passed in November, financing was secured by late January/early February, a process that typically takes between six and eight months to finalize.

Additionally, the installation of the new infield at a previously renovated field speaks to the RCF’s commitment to ongoing investment in the community. The Community Fund values returning to fields they’ve already worked on to ensure they are properly maintained and sustainable for generations of kids to come.

“Our field renovation strategy involves ongoing commitment to the jewel fields that we’ve helped renovate over close to 20 years,” Frank explained. “Being able to do so effectively requires key partners and continuity. We’re fortunate to have both with the Anderson Park District, with many of the same leaders involved dating back to the original dedication in 2008.

"Ken Kushner and his team did a tremendous job to pass a capital levy last fall and were open to the idea of rolling out a series of field projects with the new infield turf at Marty’s field. Thanks to Anderson Township Youth Sports, the Juilfs Foundation and Kid Glove for also helping bridge the financial gap and getting this project on a fast track. It’s amazing that it’s already open for play in April.”

Reds Hall of Fame broadcaster Marty Brennaman threw out the ceremonial first pitch. (Photo credit: Reds)

Brennaman put the final touch on the event by throwing a ceremonial first pitch before the Anderson Aces 11U Red team and Anderson Aces 12U team christened the new field.

The Hall of Famer has been involved in countless community projects throughout his 50 years residing in Cincinnati, including the annual Encore Technologies Marty Brennaman Golf Classic that will see its 20th edition take place in September of this year. With all proceeds from that event benefiting the RCF, Marty Golf has raised over $3.2 million since its inception.

But with Saturday’s completed renovation involving a field that bears his name in the community he settled in after moving to Cincinnati in 1974, this one was a little extra special.

“It absolutely means more,” Brennaman said. “I’ve lived in five different places since I moved here in 1974. I can walk to two of them from this park. I have people tell me all the time, ‘My boy plays on Marty Brennaman Field,’ so it means a lot to me. I played Little League baseball -- not very well, but I played -- so to have my name connected, especially in this part of town, is huge.”