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T-Bones land new owner, work with UG on stadium agreement

Posted at 12:44 PM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-15 21:16:23-04

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — There may be baseball once again at T-Bones Stadium in Kansas City, Kansas.

Less than a day after the Unified Government evicted the owners of the Kansas City T-Bones baseball club from the stadium, an agenda item for Thursday’s Unified Government’s Board of Commissioners meeting indicates a deal may be possible with a new owner.

The group, dubbed Max Fun Entertainment LLC, is expected to agree to a five-year initial deal with the Unified Government, which owns the stadium. The agreement would include three five-year renewal options, assuming the sale is approved by the commission.

The agreement also calls for Max Fun to spend at least $500,000 on capital improvements to the stadium before May 2022 with the hope of offering additional year-round amenities at the stadium. As part of the agreement, the Unified Government would use $1 million in Kansas sales tax revenue, or STAR, bonds within the next two years to help fund capital improvements.

Local businessman Mark Brandmeyer is behind the new ownership.

Brandmeyer will have to provide a $100,000 letter of credit to ensure the new owners can pay the bills if things go south.

The former owners, the Ehlert family, still owes the Unified Government roughly $300,000.

Wyandotte County Administrator Doug Bach said Brandmeyer will not inherit that debt and that the Unified Government is confident in the new business plan.

"We’re pretty excited about moving them forward to the governing body and say, 'This is somebody that cares about our community as a whole, in the Kansas City area, and I think they will continue to stay and invest and be successful out there,'" Bach said.

Fans who follow the team closely said this is a positive development.

"The players are excited, the host families are excited, and I don’t know why everyone shouldn’t be excited," Meredith Mense, who hosts players in her home each season, said.

Mense's family has hosted several players through the years and said they're like her "summer sons." She said players usually love the city and want to stay.

"They are keeping tabs on this, the ones that are really wanting to be back," Mense said. "They’re watching this."

Brandmeyer told 41 Action News on Tuesday that, if commissioners approve the deal, he’ll still need approval from the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball, the independent league in which the T-Bones play.

He expects everything to be finalized by Monday, Oct. 21.