Big Train Baseball Fans Donate $2,500 to Manna Food Center


“With the support of our fans, the Bethesda Community Base Ball Club (BCBBC) is pleased to be able to contribute $2,500 to the Manna Food Center to help with its essential work on the frontlines of the fight against Covid-19,” announced BCBBC founder and president Bruce Adams. “We have always been about more than the baseball,” Adams explained. “Our founding mission in 1999 was to improve opportunities for our youth. And our community building work has never been more important than it is today. Food insecurity is a top challenge not just nationally but right here in Montgomery County.”

“When we reassumed stewardship of Big Train baseball on June 1 this year and launched our fundraising campaign, we announced that the first $25 of the first 100 donations of $100 and more would be donated to Manna,” Adams said. “We are pleased to announce that we met our first fundraising goal of $60,000 this summer, and we met our goal of 100 donors of $100 and more.”

The Bethesda Big Train is a team of college baseball players competing each June and July in the wooden bat Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League. Sixteen Big Train alumni have made it to Major League Baseball. In 2011, the Big Train was ranked the number one team in all of summer college baseball. The Big Train plays at Shirley Povich Field in Cabin John Regional Park. For information, please go to

For the last ten years, teams in the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League including the Bethesda Big Train have collected 60,846 pounds of food for the Manna Food Center. “We value our relationship with Manna,” Adams said. “Unfortunately, the virus shut down our season, and we were not able to collect food this summer. At a time when Manna’s services are needed more than ever, we are pleased that our fans have made this donation possible.”

“We are so grateful for Big Train baseball’s continued generosity during this difficult time,” said Manna CEO Jackie DeCarlo. “A valued community partner of ours for many years now, the Big Train and the Ripken League stick with us and our mission no matter what.”  Throughout Covid, Manna Food Center never stopped providing nutritious food to families and children. Over the past six months, hundreds of new families, many of whom had never received food assistance before, have turned to Manna for help. Manna can respond because of support from community organizations like the Big Train, according to DeCarlo.

In addition to the donation to Manna, Big Train baseball showcased the important work of five of Montgomery County’s most important nonprofits this summer. Echoing the Orioles’ Birdland Community Heroes program and with the support of the Jim and Carol Trawick Foundation, Big Train baseball had planned to honor five Big Train Community Heroes in 2020. While Big Train must wait until 2021 to honor these heroes on the field, we decided to honor them this summer as they serve on the frontlines of our fight against Covid-19.

As part of our “Safe at Home Tuesdays" programming in June and July, Big Train founder and president Bruce Adams interviewed each of the five Big Train Community Heroes. Links to each interview are provided below. Here’s a link to an overview of the Big Train Community Heroes program.

Our partner, the Jim and Carol Trawick Foundation, contributed $250 to each of the five organizations represented by these five Big Train Community Heroes:

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