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Barons football team to play benefit softball game
Proceeds will go toward K-9 unit
The Manheim Central football team doesn’t kick its season off until Sept. 5 against Warwick, but they will have an important game before then.
The Barons will trade in their helmets and shoulder pads for ball and bats on Wednesday, July 23 when they play a benefit softball game for the Manheim Borough Police Department’s K-9 unit.
The game will be played from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Veterans Memorial Park’s pool field against a team consisting of 10 to 11 Manheim police officers, mayor Scot Funk and borough manager Mark Stivers. Lancaster Barnstormers mascot Cylo will also be on hand to participate in the fun. Rain date is July 30.
“I’m hoping get over 500 people. I’m hoping to have that field loaded,” said Funk, who plans to don a bite suit for a K-9 demonstration. “It’s a couple of weeks before football starts and I know how Manheim gets as football gets closer, so I thought this was a way we could get people out.”
Manheim Central coach Mike Williams and his team were quick to join the cause. In fact, this is the latest example of the Barons community-minded spirit. In the past, they have also contributed with the town’s Christmas tree lighting and done mulching work in the Manheim mini park.
“It’s great &tstr; every year they’re looking for things to do,” Funk said. “(Mike) usually tries to do two or three community-related things a year with the team to help out. He’s always been like that and when I called and said something to him about this a couple months ago, he said yes right away. He didn’t even hesitate. They’re looking forward to it.”
Following the game, people can look forward to a late night swim until 10 p.m. Admission into the pool after 8 p.m. will be only $2.
“The Lititz recCenter is running our pool this year and they’re doing a fantastic job working with us,” Funk said.
K-9 Bayne and his handler Aaron Szulborski have been a fantastic addition to the Manheim Police Department. The K-9 unit was started about two years ago, but with no tax dollars being used to fund it, they set up a stand at the Manheim Farm Show and received donations to help get things off the ground. Contributions have enabled the Manheim police to purchase a bullet and stab protective vest for Bayne. McCracken’s Feed Mill is providing dog food for Bayne and a local veterinarian is contributing his services.
But there are other expenses involved, including training sessions which Bayne and Officer Szulborski attend twice a month.
“There’s costs like that associated all the time,” Funk said. “We look to raise anywhere from $5,000 to $7,000 a year to keep it going.”
There will be no admission charge to the softball game, but a hat will be passed through the crowd for donations. Food and drinks will be available at the concession stand and prizes will be raffled off, including two round-trip airline tickets from Lancaster to Dulles International Airport, and gift certificates to Twin Kiss, Laserdome and others.
“If we can get a thousand or two dollars at the game that night, that would be nice,” Funk said.
Anyone interested in giving donations can make checks payable to Manheim Borough Police Dept. K-9 Unit. Mail the to the Manheim Borough Police Department, 4 S. Wolf St., Manheim, PA 17545.