Victoria HarbourCats looking to expand

Leadership group looking to start a Nanaimo team in 2020

Rick Stiebel/News staff

The Victoria HarbourCats are on the prowl to launch a team in Nanaimo.

The HarbourCats baseball team’s ownership group of John Wilson, Rich Harder, Ken Swanson and managing partner Jim Swanson have notified the West Coast League – one of the top collegiate summer leagues in North America – of their intention to place a team in Nanaimo for the 2020 or 2021 season.

“Nanaimo would be an ideal market for a WCL team and make for natural rivalries with Victoria, Bellingham, Port Angeles and Kelowna in particular,” Wilson, HarbourCats vice-president, said in a statement. “Jim Swanson, has dedicated many hours to researching and creating business projections. Not only do the numbers work out positively, Nanaimo has proven to be an excellent sports town with a rich history in baseball.”

Under league rules, ownership groups can own more than one team as long as each club sets up different baseball operations to maintain fairness and competitiveness.

The process underway involves completing an expansion arrangement with the WCL, a user agreement with the Serauxmen Stadium Amateur Baseball Association, the board that runs historic Serauxmen Stadium, and working out arrangements with the City of Nanaimo.

WCL commissioner Rob Neyer said he was “tremendously impressed by the local passion for bringing top-flight summer baseball to this jewel of a stadium. It definitely has the potential to provide a great baseball experience at the summer collegiate level.”

Nanaimo Mayor Leonard Krog said the city supports the expansion of the league in Nanaimo and is committed to providing assistance and co-operation to ensure the team is successful at Serauxmen Field.

Lorne Goodall, president of the Serauxmen Stadium Amateur Baseball Association, said the organization is excited to be working with the city and stadium user groups to add lights, upgrades and renovations to the stadium to help make the team a reality.

Swanson said many aspects of the successful operation in Victoria can be put in place in Nanaimo, and a collaborative effort with all stakeholders has helped drive the initiative forward.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

rick.stiebel@goldstreamgazette.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria resident says WestJet employee uttered racist comment, refused to let her on plane

Customer claims she was told ‘You guys can’t handle your alcohol’ by WestJet employee

Work has started on Malahat Skywalk, expected completion in 2021

$15-million project expected to open in spring, 2021

Victoria councillors advocate once again for free youth transit passes regionally

The idea was originally rejected by the Victoria Regional Transit Commission in August 2019

Province offers expertise to help Esquimalt clean up Gorge oil spill

A leaky home heating tank shed oil into ground and storm water systems

Heavy patches of fog along Malahat Tuesday afternoon

Drivers should use caution, drive slow along Okotoks Drive

B.C. reports first coronavirus in Vancouver region

First patient visited Wuhan, China, reported symptoms

Greater Victoria’s wanted list for the week of Jan. 28

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Uber threatens legal action to ‘defend its right’ to operate in Surrey

‘I have no concerns,’ Mayor Doug McCallum replies

Bystander who tried to help dog being attacked not liable for its death: B.C. tribunal

Owner of dog killed tried to get $5,000 in damages from man who tried to save it

INFOGRAPHIC: See how fast your B.C. city grew in 2019

The province’s fastest-growing municipalities were located on Vancouver Island

Landowner hearings begin for Trans Mountain expansion in Alberta

Detailed route talks start in Spruce Grove, in B.C. communities soon

VIDEO: Canada looking to help 126 Canadians quarantined in China for coronavirus

China has confirmed more than 4,500 cases of the new virus, with more than 100 deaths

Baby Bear statue returned to be reunited with Mama and Papa in Island Secret Garden spot

Culprit left it near the Henry Road roundabout in Chemainus with a note attached

Alessia Cara to host and perform at 2020 Juno Awards

Multi-platinum Canadian singer-songwriter also up for six awards, including Artist of the Year

Most Read