Tornadoes Ravage Dayton Area Sports Facilities

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The Dayton, Ohio, area has been buffeted with more than a dozen tornadoes in recent days and many of the community’s youth sports facilities have been damaged.

The Dayton Daily News reports that the worst damage was to Dayton’s Action Sports Center — which serves an estimated 30,000 annual participants in baseball, soccer, Ultimate Frisbee, BMX and flag football.

That complex saw its roof displaced, and the 60 acres of outdoor space are littered with debris — from uprooted highway signage to torn insulation.

“The damage is crazy,” Action Sports Center COO Kyle Coby told the Daily News.

Coby said he hopes to bring 1,000 area residents to volunteer to assist in cleanup efforts.

“We will take anybody and everybody who can help,” he said.

The facility will be forced to close for the summer, and some of the weekend baseball tournaments scheduled at the facility will likely have to be moved elsewhere. Action Sports Center’s eight baseball fields are a hot commodity, and Coby told the Daily News that the facility had 22 tournaments scheduled from March through July. Those tournaments are the Center’s main source of revenue, and can draw teams from around the country.

A so-called “Act of God” assessment is still to be determined as for how the damage may be covered by insurance.

Elsewhere, the Northridge Little League Baseball fields and the Riverside Amateur Baseball Association fields have been closed and are undergoing cleanup. Three Northridge fields are “a complete loss,” according to league president Mandi Worthington, with downed fences and roofless dugouts. Riverside, meanwhile, had two of its five fields “completely trashed,” according to association president Jon Wagner. “It’s devastating,” he added.

Both youth baseball organizations were forced to cancel games.

The Daily News reports that 13 tornadoes in total hit the Dayton area on Monday, and that the state has already seen 35 tornadoes so far this year — well above the average of 19.

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