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Monday, April 2, 2018

Find your baseballs, pull out your running gear and get ready to swing on the monkey bars. March 31st, 2018 marked the Grand Opening of the Francesco A. Memorial Baseball Fields and Community Park located in Lower Providence. It was a rain or shine event, but the sun was in full force as over 1000 people gathered for the dedication of this brand-new facility.  Children and adults of all ages came out for a spectacular  afternoon honoring the man whose passion and generosity paved the way for this world class complex donated to the township by local waste and recycling company, J.P. Mascaro & Sons. 

The afternoon began with a welcome by Mascaro council, William Fox, Jr., and was followed by a dedication invocation by Monsignor A. Murray.  Mascaro President, Pasquale “Pat” Mascaro, Sr., then spoke about the one-of-a-kind man whose life made the park a reality. 

Francesco A. Mascaro, affectionately known as “The Chief” and “Frankie”, was one of the five brothers who own J.P. Mascaro & Sons and who passed away in 2013.   Frankie lived a generous life and had a strong passion for baseball.  He enjoyed making others happy and had a special place in his heart for children and athletics. The Mascaro family knew a field of this magnitude would be the perfect fit to keep his memory alive. 

“Frankie’s legacy is one of giving and concern for others.  His kindness and generosity touched a lot of people in a lot of different ways and his spirit will continue to do so as his legacy lives on,” Mascaro explained, “We know without a doubt that he is looking down upon us today with great pride as we open these fields and this park to the community for children and adults to enjoy for generations to come.”

Over $2 million was put into the modern facility which includes a state-of-the-art, lighted regulation Little League Baseball Stadium with individual seating for over 250 spectators and additional viewing areas throughout.  It is expected to attract regional Little League tournaments.  The complex also contains two additional full-size Little League Fields that allow for multiple games to be played at the same time, a fully equipped pavilion, a concession stand, a press box, batting cages, a playground geared towards children 2-12 and a one mile paved walking path.  It was built on a large tract of land owned by the Mascaro Brothers Investment Partnership and leased to Lower Providence Township for $1.00 per year.

Those attending the ceremony made their way to the main field to witness the ceremonial first pitches.  Two Mascaro family members and employees, Pasquale Mascaro, Jr. and James Lee Mascaro, Sr., who oversaw the project, threw out the first two pitches.  They were followed by former Major League Baseball players Bobby Wine and Mike MacDougal.  The attendees then made their way back to the tents for an enormous and delicious complimentary lunch catered by Collegeville Bakery. 

The remarkable affair was open to the public and those who came out enjoyed the experience immensely.  “It was a beautiful day and a wonderful event to witness,” exclaimed community resident, Kathy Opperman, “I extend a big thank you to the Mascaro family for adding this beautiful stadium and fields to our community.  The Chief was surely smiling upon his hardworking and generous family today.  Great job!”

The complex is located at 2759 Woodland Avenue and is now available for all to enjoy. 

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