A preliminary agreement has been reached for the sale of the Bend Elks Baseball Club to Let’s Play Ball, LLC, Elks General Manager Jim Richards announced today. The sale would include the Elks summer collegiate team and the Bend Fieldhouse at Vince Genna Stadium.
Approval from the Bend Park & Recreation District, which owns Genna Stadium, is among the details to be finalized before the sale of the West Coast League team is complete. Owners from each of the 11 other WCL teams voted Aug. 26 and were unanimous in approving the sale of the team to Let’s Play Ball, LLC, according to Richards.
“One criterion of mine is that it has to be the right buyer for all the right reasons,” Richards said, adding that he believes Let’s Play Ball’s ownership shares his community-oriented mindset. “We’re very confident that once the Park District approval is made, the community will be able to see how these folks plan to take the team and the business and move them forward.”
Richards, 59, who co-founded the Elks in 2000 along with wife Mary Ann, said that “all particulars have been finalized between buyer and seller.”
According to Richards, the last remaining discussions will be between Let’s Play Ball ownership — John and Tami Marick, who live in Portland and own a home in Sunriver — and the Bend Park District, including plans for the transfer of the stadium lease from the Richards to the Maricks.
The Park District’s board of directors must approve the transfer, according to Richards. The board’s next meeting is scheduled for the first week of October, and both Richards and the Maricks are hopeful the board will approve the deal at that time.
For Jim and Mary Ann, retirement plans are in the future as they seek to spend more time with their children and three grandchildren.