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City of Red Bay cancels Dixie Youth baseball season for 2020

The coronavirus has claimed another local sporting event. The City of Red Bay has announced the decision to cancel the 2020 Dixie Youth baseball season.

“A lot of thought was put into this, and we didn’t take this decision lightly,” said Red Bay Mayor Charlene Fancher. “It is very unfortunate for our youth, but everyone’s safety and well-being is most important.”

The Dixie Youth season usually starts in April, and Fancher said the city was concerned that if it had to delay the season to late May or early June, there wouldn’t be enough participants.

“We try to go by the same guidelines as the schools,” said Fancher. “That guided our decision making.”

State Superintendent Eric Mackey released preliminary guidelines for reopening schools last week in a conference call with local superintendents. Mackey’s plan included a possible return to school campuses June 8 in groups of 10 or fewer. This policy would also extend to athletic workouts.

The next phase would start July 6, leading to – tentatively – a full return to a fall practice schedule by early August.

“We have started a youth volleyball program in Red Bay,” Fancher added. “We hope we’ll be able to get that going later in the summer.”

Fancher said the City of Red Bay still plans to open the Family Fun Park at the regularlyscheduled time, Memorial Day weekend, pending the go-ahead from Gov. Kay Ivey.

“We are hoping and waiting for additional orders from the governor,” said Fancher.  “It would be really unfortunate if we were not able to open the park. There is a lot of pent up energy with our youth, I’m sure. They are just waiting to have something fun to do.”