Like many institutions in this rotten economy, the Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society, located in Hatboro, Pennsylvania (just outside Philadelphia) is in trouble.
From Executive Director Ernie Montella, late last year:
The country's economy has finally taken its toll on our ability to continue to operate. Even with the volunteer hours donated by just a few, we find it impossible to maintain the level of committment, not only to our members, but to the remaining former professional ball players who looked to us for some kind of assistance... As the daily manager of the Society's Hatboro facility, it is very obvious to me that 2011 could be our final year as we know it today. It was lots of fun while it lasted and the memories we have of the 15 annual Sunday Breakfast Reunions we sponsored are as meaningful as our memories of sitting in the stands of Shibe Park... The list of living former A's teammates has dwindled from more than 120 when we were founded in 1996, to less than 40 today.
Our annual expenses associated with operating our Hatboro facility amounts to $70,000. The membership dues help to cover the costs of publishing our newsletters and maintaining our web-site. Donations compared to previous years are at an all-time low, as are sales from our Gift Shoppe. Your tax deductible contribution will go a long way to help us continue to operate and are always greatly appreciated.
I've been there, and I can assure you it's a wonderful place. Although the focus remains the Philadelphia A's, they've incorporated a fair amount of other materials from Philadelphia sports and MLB generally.
What can you do?