CARL KOLOGIE: Pirates roll out red carpet
Nancy Sherry-Helsel and Jerry Gillette, working together as co-chairs for the construction of a Miracle Field, stressed that it is not too late to make a contribution for the field that will be located at a site next to the YMCA of Indiana County.
Tuesday evening Indiana’s project got its share of publicity when there was a rain delay prior to the start of the game at PNC Park where the Buccos played host to the Oakland A’s — at that time the two teams with the best records in the major leagues.
The TV time during the delay centered on Pirates Charities, the philanthropic arm of the ball club that was organized in late 2006.
If you remember, it was the prior Tuesday that Bob Nutting, chairman of the board, and Frank Coonelly, president of the Pirates, were in Indiana to announce that Pirates Charities had donated $150,000 to the local project.
Sherry-Helsel, Gillette and John Morganti — a retired Indiana contractor and a member of the Miracle Field committee — were among those from Indiana invited to that game on Tuesday for their efforts with the Miracle League of Indiana County.
Among those on the guest list from Indiana were Eric Neal, director of the Indiana YMCA, and Joe and Terri Medvetz and their daughter, Teresa.
“We were treated royally,” Joe Medvetz said.
All the guests of Pirates Charities were treated to seats at the World Series Club, an exclusive section on the second tier of PNC Park where they were served gourmet food and surrounded by Pirates officials.
Mike Sherry, Indiana native and son of committee member Nancy Sherry-Helsel, was interviewed on one of the TV segments during the rain delay.
He is the current president of the Miracle League and was a driving force behind the field that was built in Cranberry.
It was quite an exciting evening for all the guests who will not soon forget the “red carpet” treatment from Pirates Charities and the Pittsburgh ball club.
Gillette noted that the local fund drive, which has a goal of $500,000, is almost at the $300,000 mark.
“We still have a ways to go, but I’m sure that we can get there and break ground for the new field sometime next fall.”
Contributions may be mailed to Miracle Field of Indiana County, P.O. Box 1457, Indiana, PA 15701.
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A news item this weekend captured my attention as I read with interest the story out of Pamplona, Spain, on the internationally famous running of the bulls held each summer.
Large numbers of foreign visitors attend each year, some as runners and millions as spectators, for the weeklong San Fermin Festival where the bull run is held every morning at 8 a.m. (2 a.m. EDT.)
This story made the headlines on Saturday when dozens of people were trampled as they were trapped at a narrow entrance to the bullring where the bulls were headed.
This brought back memories of 2001 when two Indiana natives, Dan Mock and Tom Parker, made the trip to Spain and made the half-mile run with the bulls.
They were not injured but did have a few close calls, according to a 2001 story on their escapade in the Gazette.
As Mock stated in the story, “Everybody says they’d love to do it, but when it comes to the time, you don’t know.”