Special Contributors to Niwot Youth Sports
Over the years, Niwot Youth Sports has had the good fortune to have some very special people provide their time, resources, and money to continue to improve and support the organization. This page is dedicated to them…
As recognition for Biff Warren’s efforts, hard work and dedication to and for the youth in Niwot Youth Sports, the Nimbus field site name was changed to the Biff Warren Baseball Complex. The site was originally acquired in 1992 as a result of the efforts of NYS Baseball President Dan Knollenberg, Baseball Director Biff Warren, and Softball Director Jim Martinsen in cooperation with Left Hand Water District President Leroy Schlagel and Manager Jim Dickey. Construction of the field began in 1993 with a group of volunteers, including Greg Hagen.
Canar Field (located at Monarch Park) was dedicated as a memorial to Jim Canar. Jim was a coach for what was then Gunbarrel Lefthand Valley Recreation Association (now Niwot Youth Sports) until his untimely death in an auto accident in 1979. His wife, Karen (Canar) Simpson assisted in the administration of the baseball league and his son, Jason Canar, continued his baseball career in GLVRA for many years. The Canar family, including daughters Debbie and Terri, established a memorial fund through GLVRA. When the first permanent fields were acquired, the memorial funds were used to purchase materials for construction of the fields. An irrigation system and grass were installed in 1994 through largely volunteer efforts led by Gregg Hangge, Larry Longseth, Rick Kurcab and Dan Knollenberg. Dugouts were built by Gregg Hangge and Tracy Nissen and permanent sideline and outfield fencing were added. Grass and irrigation as well as dugouts and permanent fencing were later added in 1994. Canar Field was dedicated in memory of Jim Canar in 1986. Until construction of Hagen Field in 1997, Canar Field was the largest NYS facility. It has been used for Seniors baseball players ages 13-15.
In 2011, Hangge Fields at Monarch Park were named in recognition of Gregg Hangge and his family’s outstanding dedication to Niwot Youth Sports programs and facilities. Soon after moving to Gunbarrel, Gregg Hangge volunteered as a coach with the NYS basketball program in 1988, and soon became Basketball Director, serving for many years. He also became the Director of Fields and served in that capacity until his retirement from the board. Gregg coordinated every major ballfield construction project for NYS, with the assistance of his wife, Karen, and his children, Joe, Jill, Jon and Jake. The Hangge family also took on the job of maintaining the ballfields for NYS, which they continued to do for many years after they had graduated from the NYS programs. Without the efforts of Gregg and his family, NYS would not have the outstanding ballfields the players enjoy today.
The Eddie Kurcab Memorial Flagpole (located at Monarch Park) was erected and dedicated by Niwot Youth Sports in 1995 in memory of Eddie Kurcab. The father of NYS coach Rick Kurcab and grandfather of NYS player Dean Kurcab, Eddie Kurcab passed away in 1994. The Kurcab family established a memorial fund through Niwot Youth Sports and the proceeds were used to construct the flagpole and surrounding benches. Rick Kurcab and his landscaping company, Rock Creek Landscape, have been responsible for designing and constructing the irrigation systems for all NYS fields, including Monarch Park Fields, Nimbus Fields and Left Hand Valley Grange Field. Much of Rick’s time has been donated and he has obtained significant donations and cost savings from vendors of materials used by NYS for field construction. A memorial brick dedication program for a walkway around the flagpole was established in 1995 through the efforts of Phil Garcia, Jay Anderson and Joe and Lori DeMersseman.
Comer Field (located at Monarch Park) was dedicated as a memorial to Jim Comer and his son, Monte Comer. Monte played baseball in what was then Gunbarrel Lefthand Valley Recreation Association (now Niwot Youth Sports) for several years until his untimely death due to illness in 1976 at the age of ten. His father, Jim Comer, later became a baseball and basketball coach for GLVRA when his son Cody began play. In 1984, a heart attack claimed Jim Comer’s life. The Comer family established a memorial fund through GLVRA and many donations were received. Comer field was dedicated in memory of Jim and Monte Comer in 1986. The field is used by the NYS baseball program for 10, 11 and 12 year olds, and has been used by the Niwot High School varsity girls softball team in the fall.
Greg Hagen Field was dedicated August 11, 1996, as a memorial to Greg Hagen who died tragically in an auto accident in 1993 at the age of 39. Greg’s wife Nancy, his son Andrew and his daughter Chelsea established a memorial fund in Greg’s memory through Niwot Youth Sports. Hagen Field is the largest NYS field, with fences of almost 300 feet. Dugouts were completed in 1996 by Eagle Scout Sam O’Donnell, and grass and irrigation were added in the fall of 1997 with the assistance of the Colorado Rockies and a group of dedicated volunteers, including Tim and Sheryl Shuminsky, Gregg and Joe Hangge, and Biff and Susan Warren. Other contributions were received from Jay Anderson (sign), Rock Creek Landscape (irrigation system), and BMC West (lumber). Greg Hagen’s parents have established a $10,000 endowment fund through NYS to provide funds for maintenance of the field. The field is used primarily by NYS Seniors baseball players ages 13-15.
Kevin Ritz Field was dedicated September 25, 1997, in recognition of donations of over $41,000.00 to Niwot Youth Sports by the Colorado Rockies and Kevin Ritz through the Robert R. McCormick Tribute Foundation’s Youth Field Program. Ritz Field is a miniature of Coors Field with similar outfield fence configuration, a warning track and grass infield. The field was named in honor of the pitcher Kevin Ritz, who holds the Rockies’ record for victories in a season with 17. Niwot Youth Sports Executive Director Tim Shuminsky, along with Baseball President Bill Lambert, President-Elect Joe and Lori DeMerssman, Baseball Director Phil Garcia, and Fields Coordinators Gregg Hangge and Rick Kurcab were instrumental in obtaining the Rockies grant and organizing and supervising the effort. Other donations of concrete and dugout lumber were received from Tracy Nissen of Total Concrete and Wickes Lumber. The field is used primarily by Niwot Youth Sports baseball players ages 9 to 12.
The storage and equipment building at Nimbus Fields was donated by Bob Spencer and R.A. Spencer Construction in 1998. Mr. Spencer coordinated construction of the building and obtained donations from various subcontractors. Tracy Nissen of Total Concrete, Inc., donated the concrete foundation. Gregg Hangge of Niwot Youth Sports designed the building and painted it. The building has allowed Niwot Youth Sports to maintain Hagen, Ritz, and Columbine Fields at minimal cost.
Jim Ehrets, thanks for your tireless efforts at the Warren complex.