Photo by Marcus McCurdy via Flickr Creative Commons
With bases loaded and two outs, who will go to bat to save little league? Turns out, a local strip club.
The Lennox Little League season was saved, in part, to a big donation from Jet Strip, a nearby gentlemen's club in the unincorporated area of Los Angeles. James Wallace, Jet Strip's general manager and a 15-year member of Lennox's Coordinating Council, said the club does not like to brag about donations.
Their $1,200 gift to the struggling league came after the Lennox School District imposed new regulations and fees to pay for a field security guard position. The school board doubled the per-day fee it previously charged the league for use of the fields, the Daily Breeze explained.
Disputes between the league and the district have impacted player participation and delayed the start of the season by weeks.
Instead of a ceremony with live music, hot food and amusements, the season opened Saturday with just "a few balloons tied to the chain-link fence and a first pitch," said the Daily Breeze. The league's volunteer president, Roberto Aguirre, called the display "embarrassing," and "sad."
Other organizations also hustled to keep the 300 mini-sluggers running for another season.
$1,000 was donated from the league in Westchester, and $600 was given by the Lennox Coordinating Council, an unofficial city council of the community, notes NBC LA.
Aguirre was appreciative for the assistance, but knows the financial dance is far from over. "It feels good to be from Lennox when people do stuff like that...At the same time, the future is very scary for us, because [the donation] is a one-time deal," he told the Daily Breeze.
Inability to sell food at games is a key problem. Health concerns last year halted sales mid-season of grilled foods like hamburgers and hot dogs.
A local non-profit has offered free services in constructing an official snack bar. The economically depressed community -- in which families are offered a payment plan to break up the $85 annual league fee --would still need to raise $65,000 for the project materials, however.