Defiance City Council received details Tuesday night on a huge softball tournament coming to town in 2020.
The presentation by Kirstie Mack, director of the Defiance Development and Visitors Bureau (DDVB), and Josh Busch, a board member, highlighted council’s regular meeting.
According to Mack, the Class A tournament for girls ages 14-16, will be held from June 26-28, 2020, with some 50 teams.
“This is going to be a big deal, so we’re very excited about it,” said Mack, noting that Defiance College will be “deeply involved” in the event as well.
“It’s really exciting ... from a lot of different aspects,” added Busch. “We think economically this is going to be huge for the community because they’re going to stay somewhere, they’re going to eat somewhere, they’re going to have things to do.
“They’re going to come in on Friday for the college showcase ... which the college is very stoked about this,” Busch continued. “The college showcase is an opportunity for college coaches to interact with some players within guidelines of (the) NCAA.”
He noted that the tourney games will use various venues in Defiance and, perhaps Napoleon, as 11-13 fields will be needed. And he said ballfields at Ayersville and Tinora schools also have been discussed as possible game sites as well.
Mack said the tournament has been shifted from Findlay, and would remain in Defiance for at least three to five years. Busch indicated that the condition of local fields would play a key role in how long the tournament would continue to be held here.
Also Tuesday, Mack reviewed the Defiance Rib Fest, which the DDVB held on Sept. 28 in downtown Defiance. She said some 7,000 people attended.
“Its really, really turned into a great event,” she said. “We had no issues, which is even better. When you have that many people you always kind of wait for what might trickle down, but we had zero issues again this year.”
Next year’s rib fest is set for Sept. 26, she said.
Speaking on another downtown matter, Mack said things continue to go well with the downtown outdoor refreshment area (DORA), which began functioning in July. Alcoholic beverages can be consumed in special cups outdoors within the boundaries of Defiance’s DORA district.
She noted that some persons had DORA cups in hand Friday evening as they watched the new Clinton Street bridge deck being poured.
“So, you can pretty much turn any activity into a DORA event,” she stated.
In talking with Defiance Police Chief Todd Shafer, Mack added that there still have been no issues with the district.
In other business Tuesday:
• Mack informed council that trick or treat will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. Oct. 24, the Halloween Parade is set for Oct. 26 and the “Witch’s Brew” downtown event (for those 21 and older) is scheduled from 5-8:30 p.m. Oct. 31. Meanwhile, Santa Claus will arrive in downtown Defiance on Nov. 30.
• Administrator Jeff Leonard said he spoke with a woman who appeared before council last week concerned that the 40-mile per hour speed limit on East Second Street is too high. While Leonard said a speed limit reduction would require a traffic study, he conceded that a pedestrian crossing there should be considered. “I think we need to take a look at providing pedestrians the ability to cross that street safely,” he said.
• council scheduled a streets and sidewalk committee meeting during its regular session at 7 p.m. Oct. 22. Ward 2 Councilman John Hancock said the meeting will address sidewalk policy, specifically on Clinton Street.
• At-large Councilman Jill Krutsch reviewed the Defiance Community Cultural Commission’s upcoming schedule, which includes the musical group “The Shootouts” Friday at the Stroede Center for the Arts, 319 Wayne Ave.
• Krutsch asked the administration to look into a possible water leak at Myers Street and Wayne Avenue. Leonard said he would have the concern checked out.
• Ward 3 Councilman Dave Plant asked about the legality of temporary business signs on public right-of-way. Leonard said these should be removed.
• Leonard noted two city expenditures that fall just under the $25,000 threshold requiring council consent — $23,400 to repair the roof of the former American Legion building now owned by the city and $20,000 for wastewater plant sludge removal.
• council met in executive session to discuss pending litigation.