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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

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"The Neighborhood Project": East Tosa | Wednesday Evening Pickup Baseball

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Listen: On a handful of occasions, "Norman Rockwell" entered my conversations with neighbors from East Tosa. Of course, it was qualified as "Norman Rockwell with a 21st century twist," but the reference resonated -- there's more than a flavor of classic Americana to what's going on in East Tosa. And I say that with no irony or pejorative-intention. This section of Wauwatosa is one that has identified itself, rolled up its sleeves, and presents itself with a levelheaded pride. They've invested in a family-friendly, progressive-minded urban community that's just as good as its sounded this past week. In fact, I was actually a bit covetous when they invited me to a pickup baseball last Wednesday evening -- why weren't those in my neighborhood when I was growing up?

As my final event in East Tosa, I was invited to a "pickup baseball game," not sure what to expect. And what did I find? A bunch of kids and parents, enjoying a good ol' fashioned pickup baseball game. In my backpack, I'd brought a mitt and microphone, so I put both to good use. My first interview was with Steve Farr, an East Tosa resident who turned out to have a deeper connection to this particular pickup baseball game: [audio=1]

After talking to Steve, I took a break from interviewing to throw a few pitches, and then it was back to work. In this piece, three neighborhood heavy hitters (pun intended), Ed Hayden, Bobby Pantuso, and Karri Tait, shared some reflections on East Tosa: [audio=2]

Interested in learning more about East Tosa? The best place to start is their neighborhood website. And perhaps even better, get out to the neighborhood and check it out yourself!

Produced by: Adam Carr