In celebration of Hank Aaron Weekend, Delta employees partnered with the Atlanta Braves to restore a historic ballfield in Bush Mountain, one of the oldest Black communities in Atlanta's historic Westside neighborhood.
"Hank Aaron was a beloved friend of Delta, and sponsoring Hank Aaron Weekend is our way of commemorating a life dedicated to empowering Black youth and fighting for equity on and off the field," said Tad Hutcheson, Managing Director for Community Engagement at Delta. "It is through our partnerships with organizations like the Braves that Delta is able to live out its commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as part of our work to connect and reflect the world."
On Wednesday, July 28, employees created a community space at the former practice field for the Atlanta Black Crackers, a professional Black baseball team founded during the Jim Crow era. The volunteers built and mulched a trail and field orchard, revived a fire pit, planted the Bush Mountain Community Garden, painted garden markers and playground games, and removed invasive species. Additionally, they created a washing station inside the old Hartnett Library, which was part of a community school founded in 1935 for children living in Atlanta's 10th Ward.
Each year, Delta sponsors Hank Aaron weekend, which celebrates the icon's legacy of furthering the spirit of equity and positive social change as a player, philanthropist, front office executive and businessperson. To honor "Hammerin' Hank," who died Jan. 22, this was the first year Delta hosted a volunteer event and donated an additional $100,000 to the Henry Louis Aaron Fund, which works to increase minority participation in baseball on the field, in baseball's business operations, in careers at the minor and major league level, and in the front offices of clubs across Major League Baseball.
The Bush Mountain property is stewarded by the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance, a community-based social and environmental justice nonprofit that is supporting West Atlanta with urban forest preservation, urban food gardens, watershed protection and educational programming.