JULY 24, 1940 - JULY 6, 2016
Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush I am the swift uplifting rush Of quiet birds in circled flight. I am the soft star that shines at night.
I am the rainbow.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there; I did not die;
Coach, you will always be with us. We love you. We miss you so much. You can count on us.... We will Honor, Serve, and Protect your Legacy.
"You are our Hero"
“Every kid in America should have the opportunity to play baseball in Cooperstown.” ~Lou Presutti, Sr.
Louis A. Presutti was a hard-nosed second baseman for the Belmont Athletics Baseball club who barnstormed with the A’s on the semi-pro circuit in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York from 1927 until the Second World War. Lou Presutti, a diehard New York Yankee fan, lived in the golden age of Ruth and Gehrig and the Yankee dynasties. His love was baseball.
He passed his love for the game on to his son Lou, Jr. and his grandson, Louis III. Kids and baseball went hand-in-hand for Lou, who took his son and grandson on trips to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown every few years. These pilgrimages together to the mythical birthplace would make a lifetime impression.
The traditions and values exemplified from generation-to-generation were inspired by the family matriarch, Nancy Presutti. It was her strength and determination that bound the family together. The five-star mother continued to set the table and the stages for the future while her five highly decorated boys were serving their country during World War II. She displayed the five-star plaque with pride and dignity for her new country. The family of five brothers and three sisters lived through faith, family, country and baseball.
One day, while standing in the National Baseball Hall of Fame with his son and grandson, the grandfather exclaimed… “every kid in America should have the opportunity to play baseball in Cooperstown!”
Time would bring forth Cooperstown Dreams Park!
“The Dream” lived on in the five-year old grandson’s mind with the boy and his father each dedicating themselves to the cause of youth baseball.
In 1992, Lou Sr. passed away, but the dream intensified as his son and grandson became more determined to make his dream come true. Construction began in the spring of 1996 amidst some of the heaviest rainfall in Otsego County’s history. Construction crews and hundreds of other contractors committed themselves to the mission of Cooperstown Dreams Park. The determination of Louis, the construction team, and the blind faith of those inaugural year coaches, players, staff, teams, umpires and families have opened the door for the youth of America to experience a baseball park unlike any other in the world.
Long live the spirit of Louis A. Presutti…his dream that every youth in America be given the opportunity to play baseball in Cooperstown.
Thanks to the special people of Kodak, Pepsi, and First Union Bank. They believed in the dream when it was just a wind-blown, open field.
Cooperstown Dreams Park and the American Youth Baseball Hall of Fame are the physical manifestations of what was once nothing but a dream. Seen through the eyes of family, coaches, players and parents, for whom Dreams Park was built, it is truly an inspiration to all of us, A Summer Tradition.
Cooperstown Dreams Park offers all players a chance to succeed – to savor their moment in the spotlight and to feel the excitement of success. The Dreams Park Experience promotes a healthy spirit of competition, while at the same time instilling traditional values and respect for the integrity of the game. Many coaches and parents have described their week at Dreams Park as the highlight of their child’s life, a memory that lasts a lifetime. We take pride in keeping the tradition of America’s game, baseball, in its purest form. It is that spirit that has made Cooperstown Dream Park the “Crown Jewel of Youth Baseball.”
Beginning with our Opening Ceremony, you can feel the energy and excitement of the cultural exchange and life enrichment that Dreams Park offers. Weekly more than 100 teams from all over the country come together for pin trading, orientation, eating together, skills competitions, and the excitement of the seasonal tournament. As the competition builds, all twenty-two fields come to life with home runs, diving catches and heroic saves. As the games go on, we witness the beginning of each player’s dream, to become his or her own hero. At the end of the week, each player is inducted in the prestigious American Youth Baseball Hall of Fame, and receives the coveted Hall of Fame ring. Every player leaves the Dreams Park with a great sense of pride, dignity and accomplishment, and develops an appreciation for the traditional values of faith, family, country and baseball.
At no other time in the history of youth baseball has there ever been an invitational tournament quite like Cooperstown Dreams Park, with its unique baseball atmosphere ... where the baseball present meets the traditional values of baseball past.
Take a step back in time ... with barnstormers of baseball past. Fields cut from the same pastures that have given life to the magical myth of Abner Doubleday. Teams travel far and wide to play ball on these sacred fields.
Cooperstown Dreams Park ... where independent travel/select and sanctioned teams are unrestricted to play baseball as it was meant to be played ... feel the presence of Ruth and Gehrig ... Cobb and Robinson ... Shoeless Joe and Moonlight Graham ... and all the other great legends.
For the first time in Youth Baseball, Cooperstown Dreams Park recaptures baseball tradition. In the most unique tournament available today, Cooperstown Dreams Park plays host to teams from across the globe, who experience our National Pastime by playing in the Magical Mythical Home of Baseball ... Cooperstown, New York.
The Cooperstown Dreams Park Experience is not just a national title baseball tournament, it is about your children, families, and the purity of the cultural life enrichment that it offers. Each year over 14,000 players become heroes.
The players, parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, other family members, and friends all have ONE DREAM - to appreciate the purity of the game, to enjoy the experience of a lifetime, and to play baseball where it all began.