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New Richmond Youth Sports

New Richmond Youth Sports

History of NRYSA and NRKA

NRYSA: New Richmond Youth Sports has a long history and starts many many years ago as two different organizations, New Richmond Youth Softball and New Richmond Knothole Association, and three different sports; knothole, softball, and volleyball.
NRYSA and NRKA merged in 2018 to provide a unified association for all the parents and players since two of the sports were very similar in operation and all three sports used many of the same volunteers. They even shared a few board members. Here is a look at their histories.

New Richmond Youth Softball: Over 50 years ago Ray Hayslip was heavily involved with both softball and knothole, but having only daughters he found that they needed a structured program and a place to play. Since softball was not able to play on the ballfields in the village of New Richmond he approached the Ohio Township Trustees and received permission to build a concession stand and ballfields for the public and the softball program to use The league the softball teams played in is the Southern Ohio Softball League, and they continue to play in this league today. The girls program played there and when Ray Hayslip finally "retired" from running the softball program he turned it over to Ray Fowee. The fields at Ohio Township were dedicated to Ray Hayslip for all the work he did to keep the softball program alive for girls of New Richmond. Ray Fowee ran the program for many years, even after his own daughter was too old to play. In  2005 he started working with Kristin Bennett, in a transition year, for him to step down and her to replace him as president. She became president in 2006 and is still in that position today. 

New Richmond Volleyball:  Craig and Angie Fischer created 2 volleyball teams in 2012 at Nothin' But Net for their three daughters and their friends to start playing volleyball. Each and every year they had more and more girls interested in playing the sport. Since they both were also involved with softball, it was approached at a table in Skyline to create a volleyball program and merge it with softball. Craig was the first VP of Volleyball and Angie served as secretary and treasurer for NRYSA. In 2015, volleyball started it's first season as an internal league since there were not any leagues established for them to join. In 2016, the volleyball program started playing in the Cincinnati Premier Youth Volleyball League, and they still do today. 

New Richmond Knothole: Over 50 years ago New Richmond Knothole was playing at the ballfields in New Richmond and Monroe Knothole played at Monroe Elementary. At some point NRKA 's president Tom Schwab, and MKA's president Robert Fischer Sr merged the two associations and NRKA continued to play at the ballfields in NR (since the fields at Monroe Elementary were tore down to build an addition to the school and the parking lot, years later the school constructed 4 fields for the youth to use). Tom served as the president for many years and  many presidents followed  throughout the years: Butch Baker, Jeff Williams, Donnie Lawrence, Aaron Humphries, Glenn Ewing and Jamey Strunk. In the winter of 2017, NRKA approached NRYSA about merging. Both boards meet to discuss and in 2018 the decision was presented to both associations and they both voted to merge. 

(this is the earliest history that we have, and if someone knows more please contact us at [email protected] to help us out).  

The History of the Merge and The Move to Monroe Fields

When NRKA approached NRYSA about merging in the winter of 2017 they were in financial difficulties. Having been playing at the ball fields in NR, the village of NR required them to maintain the property year round along with paying a $1000 rental fee. In 2017 they had not yet paid their rental fee and with only $48.00 in their account (and owing their teams approximately $2400; they were -$2500 in the red). NRKA met with NRYSA to disclose this information and to express their concern for not being able to provide the funds for the field rental, that knothole in NR could potentially be ended. Since many of the same volunteers (and even board members) were involved with both organizations, the benefit of streamlining operations, and providing all three sports to children of the community were important; NRYSA agreed to consider the merge knowing they are bringing in an association with debt. Thankfully the village of NR waived the rental fees for 2017 only, and allowed NRYSA to rent the property always known as the "knothole fields" in 2018 for the same fee of $1000.00 along with maintaining the property year round. 
After running the program for one year there were many issues that were discovered that required a change in the operation of three locations (Mt Pisgah/Ohio Township fields, Knothole fields, and the practice fields at Monroe Elementary). Here are some of those issues:
-inability to store equipment to maintain the fields at all three locations
-not having enough field equipment even if it could be stored
-cost to maintain the property cost around $10,000 per year (mowing, weed eating, parking lot, and fields)
-the concession stand at the knothole fields needed a new roof, floors redone, bathrooms had to be operational, drainage around the concession stand added, and new plumbing under the sink in order for the Board of Health to allow us to open in 2019. The value of those repairs was over $10,000.
-Fencing needing repaired at the knothole fields
-parking was limited at both the knothole fields and Mt Pisgah
-little to no volunteers willing to help maintain all three locations

NRYSA  met for several months and help both association meetings and a public meeting to discuss vacating the fields in the village of New Richmond. This was due to the fact the village had told NRYSA multiple times they wish to sell the property, and any money put into repairs would not be given back to NRYSA if the property sold. NRYSA even inquired about purchasing the property and was told the value was $300,000 not including the repair costs needed. After much discussion with New Richmond Exempted Village School District, they agreed to allow NRYSA to place a concession stand and add two fields (at a later time) for the use of all knothole and softball activities.  They required NRYSA to pay for any utilities used, all costs associated with maintaining the fields during their season only, and maintaining the complex. This was able to be done at less than $19,000 the first year (this includes the cost of the concession trailer) and around $5000 per year since. The decision to move was a business decision and was allowing NRYSA to secure a location for the future generations to come vs an unknown amount of time and expenses if we stayed at the knothole fields.

In the winter of 2022, NRYSA was able to build a new field, increasing the amount of playing fields to 6. Each year improvements have been made to enhance the ball fields and the campus that we use. Each improvement has been possible due to fundraising and local business sponsorships. The ball fields are some of the best fields to play on, especially after rain. Many times other districts cancel, while we are still able to continue to play.

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