SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – A new campaign has begun for the funding of a new, tournament-grade youth baseball and softball complex in Caddo Parish.

The YMCA of Northwest Louisiana is determined to raise $7 million for the project that many private and corporate donors have already thrown their chips into; the City of Shreveport has already coughed up $1.5 million, and the Caddo Parish Commission has added an additional $2 million.

“The long-term economic impact of this project will be massive,” said Gary Lash, the YMCA’s CEO.

Jaf Fielder, the President and CEO of Willis-Knighton said that few things in our community are as important as creating a positive quality of life and healthy environment for our youth. He believes that providing kids with greater opportunities to engage in physical fitness and team sports is important.

“That’s why Willis-Knighton is proud to partner with the YMCA and Shreveport Little League to offer greater access to activities with this new state-of-the-art complex that will bring families together and increase participation in sports for children across northwest Louisiana.”

Fielder said that sports go beyond physical development, teaching the importance of teamwork and instilling self-esteem.

The director of Caddo Parish Parks and Recreation, Patrick Wesley, said that Caddo is ready; ready to be a part of the YMCA’s baseball and softball complex, and ready to work in a partnership for the development of youth baseball in Caddo Parish.

“We envision this as a long-term partnership for the development of youth baseball in Caddo Parish,” said Wesley.  

The complex will include artificial turf and attract traveling teams for regional and national competitions. It is expected that the venue will focus on creating more community-building opportunities for Caddo Parish, too.

Youth sports are a $37.5 billion market in the states, where local families spend weekends traveling outside of their regions to watch and play kids’ sports. Reversing that trend is one of the YMCA’s goals. They want to bring youth sports tourists here, to northwest Louisiana.

Lash said Caddo Parish has a geographical advantage, sitting between Little Rock, Dallas, and Jackson.

“This facility will allow travel teams from north, west, and east of us to meet in the middle for numerous competitions and tournaments throughout the year,” said Lash.

Construction is set to begin in July, and the goal is to open the complex by Spring 2024.

If you’re interested in this project, visit the YMCA website at