“When talks of a merger between the Hub City Pita Pit Brewers and the Moncton Mets began in the winter of 2014, one thing was never in doubt....Field of Dreams would continue stronger than ever!! For the first 5 summers, the Hub City Brewers, led by an amazing group of volunteers and with the support of generous sponsors operated this tremendous program which has seen so much growth since its inaugural season. The merger of the 2 former senior teams to become the Moncton FisherCats has only helped build awareness of this amazing program. Our program gained national attention in 2012 when it was approached by Ian McLean, National Director of Challenger Baseball (a division of Baseball Canada) to join their Challenger Baseball program. We are the first group from New Brunswick, and the 2nd in Atlantic Canada to join Challenger Baseball! The program’s philosophy is very simple “play, just for fun!!” Field of Dreams/Challenger Baseball allows children with cognitive or physical disabilities the opportunity to enjoy all the benefits of playing baseball, in an environment that caters to their very special needs. Shannon Cameron, Manager of the Trinity Drive Atlantic Superstore, a major sponsor of Field of Dreams had this to say when asked about the reason they wanted to be involved: “The 3 local Superstores wanted to be more involved in our community and our Company’s (Loblaw) initiative is to help kids with special needs. In fact our President’s Choice Children’s Charity® (PC Children’s Charity) is dedicated to helping children who are physically or developmentally challenged. Our aim is to remove some of the obstacles that make everyday living extremely difficult and to provide young people with a renewed sense of dignity, independence and freedom. Partnering up with the Moncton FisherCats and being Proud Sponsors of the Field of Dreams is a win/win for us. Once you see those smiles on all the kids’ faces who get to play baseball with their peers…..there is no way we couldn’t be involved!!” Every Monday night throughout the summer, the “game” is played in a safe, recreational environment, where no score is kept. Able-bodied volunteers are there to assist players on how to hold the bat, help push the wheelchairs around the bases and to provide protection for the kids
"On May 16th, 2016 The Field of Dreams Baseball Program joined forces with the City of Moncton and the Province of New Brunswick to announce a joint partnership to become the first city in Atlantic Canada to have a fully accessible Baseball field. All 3 parties have committed $167,000 each toward this project. This project will first and foremost allow our kids with disabilities an area to play without limitations. When not used by Field of Dreams, this field will continue to be used by our local Minor Baseball program and the local Special Olympics softball team. Construction is set to begin in mid/late June for a September 2nd, 2016 completion date.”
“Challenger Baseball Jamboree” During the winter of 2013, volunteers and parents began a 6 month fundraising project that included: selling raffle tickets/chocolate bars/garbage bags and a bottle drive. In June 2014, we were able to send 19 Field of Dreams kids and a parent (59 people in total!!) to Toronto for the “Challenger Baseball Jamboree” held at the Rogers Centre. Everyone attended the Saturday afternoon game between the St. Louis Cardinals vs Toronto Blue Jays, in the luxurious “Jays Care Community Clubhouse!” where the kids were featured on the Blue Jays SportsNet telecast of the game. At the conclusion of the game (6-0 win for the Cardinals), the kids got to play a game on the Rogers Centre field!! Among others to participate were Blue Jays players Kevin Pilar, Anthony Gose as well as some of the players’ wives. As you can see from the smiles below, this was a success.
“Blue Jays Clinics in Moncton” For the past 2 summers, the Toronto Blue Jays have invited Field of Dreams kids to Kiwanis Park to play a game against Blue Jays alumni players such as: Roberto Alomar, Devon White, Jesse Barfield, Duane Ward and others.
Pita Pit franchisee Nathan Roy, is also a firm believer in the Field of Dreams program; “Pita Pit decided to partner as we believe in giving everyone the opportunity to do anything anybody can do! From our fully accessible Restaurant, to the field, we want everyone to feel like they belong.” Nathan who is also the parent of a Field of Dreams player (Alek) had this to say from a parents’ point of view; “I have seen over the years how some of the children come “out of their shells” while playing ball! Our son, Alek, can’t wait to play ball and they all look forward to this time together where everyone is treated as an equal with as many opportunities as the next. So many smiling faces and the lives are changed immediately. It benefits everyone involved, from the kids to the parents. Bravo!” Tracey Mogan, mother of Taylor who is a member of the Field of Dreams: “As a parent nothing makes me happier than seeing the joy my son gets out of attending the Field of Dreams program. I am so grateful to the Pita Pit Brewers (and now the FisherCats) and volunteers who give up their free time so that he can play baseball and make new friends.......and most of all have fun......where everyone gets a home run and nobody gets tagged out!” Thanks to our generous sponsors, every year each player is outfitted in beautiful team jerseys and hats and the year is never complete without the “YEAR END TEAM PARTY!” with each child receiving a trophy, team pictures and their own individual baseball cards!