Former White Stripes band leader Jack White has made a generous donation to help restore a historic Negro Leagues ballpark.
The Detroit Free Press reported that White, a native of Detroit, contributed to a campaign to restore Hamtramck Stadium. The campaign hopes to raise $50,000 to restore the field, formerly the home of the Detroit Stars, for baseball and soccer games.
"White, an avid baseball fan best known for fronting legendary Detroit garage-rock band the White Stripes, is helping kick off the campaign with a very generous $10,000 donation," a Monday news release said.
MLB.com reported Warstic, a company co-owned by White, confirmed the donation was made in a Tuesday Instagram post.
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We believe Baseball is a sport for everyone who has the passion and hunger for the game. No matter race, gender, ethnicity, or financial status ... it should be for everyone. And accessible. This is exactly why we are proud of #Warstic Co-owner @officialjackwhitelive’s donation to help raise funds for the @hamtramckstadium field restoration in #Detroit, one of five remaining #NegroLeagues baseball stadiums in the country. Jack White’s desire to preserve the unique history of Baseball is complemented by Warstic’s mindset towards evolving the culture of Baseball. In this vein, our @TeamWarstic programing was created to teach, inspire and develop players, not just with their mechanics and skills but with their mind and worldview. For us, it’s not about where they come from, but rather the #grit to go against the grain and the willingness to #battle to make people’s lives better. #warstripenation #teamwarstic #morethanbasballislife #notbaseballdaycare #timetohunt #learnittoearnit
The Patronicity campaign is supported by The Michigan Economic Development Corp., the Piast Institute and Friends of Historic Hamtramck Stadium, Freep reported. If the campaign raises $50,000 by April 2, the MEDC's Public Spaces Community Places program will match the grant. Funds will go toward restoring and updating the space for community use, including art installations, field improvements and signage.
More than $21,000 has been raised toward its $50,000 goal.
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Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2012, Hamtramck Stadium is one of just five remaining home parks of major Negro Leagues teams. Built in 1930, the existing structure stopped being used in the 1990s and is closed to the public.
"Our hope is to preserve this very special place where my father and his teammates made history," Rosilyn Stearnes-Brown, daughter of a Hall of Fame Detroit Stars outfielder Turkey Stearnes, said in a statement.
"It's important to provide our young people with opportunities that will enrich their minds and will make them productive, positive individuals, striving to make a difference in our society just like the players in the Negro Leagues," Stearnes' daughter Joyce Stearnes Thompson said in the release. "Hamtramck Stadium can be a magnificent field of dreams that will preserve the legacy of my father and the Negro Leaguers in this special place they loved."
Donations can be made to the restoration of Hamtramic Stadium at Patronicity.com.
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