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After lease decision, what becomes of the Flyers?

Schaumburg FlyersWith the Schaumburg Flyers (independent; North American League) slated to leave the team’s Alexian Field home today after the Village’s decision to go with the American Association in coming years, the fate of the team remains up in the air.

With the Village tentatively awarded the lease at Alexian Field for coming seasons, the Flyers were given a deadline of today to clear the premises. The assumption by many is that the team will fold, but that’s certainly not a given. Indeed, yesterday the Flyers management put up the following notice on its website:

Our entire organization is disappointed in the Village Board’s decision yesterday, especially after 13 years of running our small business and risking over $30 million privately in a difficult economy. We’re mostly disappointed for the people and local businesses of Schaumburg, as last week the Flyers reached an agreement with a qualified, successful local business owner who agreed to immediately purchase the team this week, pay the Village and local creditors, and have a 2011 season that was highly anticipated by many fans. It’s a great disservice to the community that the Village Board blocked our sale, that over 200 locals will not have the jobs they rely on annually at the stadium, and the community will not have its home team and the affordable summertime entertainment that it provides.

We wish the Schaumburg community all the best. We will surely miss all our great fans and business partners that have been loyal for so many years. Please check this site periodically for an update on where you can see the Flyers play in 2011, as well as policies for 2011 purchases.

One can quibble over some of the facts — Schaumburg waited months for this mysterious buyer to actually consummate a deal — but it does sound like the team plans on continuing operations, and there are certainly plenty of options for Rich Ehrenreich and crew to field a Schaumburg Flyers team for 2011:

  • They could play in Fielders Stadium alongside the Lake County Fielders, the other North American League team owned by many in the Flyers ownership. Logistically, as a short-term solution, this makes some sense. But the situation in Zion regarding the completion of a real ballpark remains up in the air.
  • Relocating to Kenosha’s Carthage College ballpark, where the Fielders played part of the 2010 season. Again, not ideal.
  • Playing as a road team. This would throw the NAL schedule into chaos, of course, though we’d be amazed if a tentative schedule anticipating this potential outcome wasn’t already prepared by NAL folks.

And, of course, there are certainly other options out there. Whatever the outcome, it should be an interesting month or two while the North American League and the Flyers work out a game plan.

RELATED STORIES: American Association lands Schaumburg; Schaumburg meeting with potential Alexian Field lessees; Court: Schaumburg can move ahead with Flyers eviction; Schaumburg quietly invites leagues to pitch for Alexian Field lease; Flyers tax woes date back to August; Flyers sale postponed; team loses business license; Flyers sale still in works; indy world waits on resolution; NAL at 12 for 2011; league looking at Metrodome?; NAL at 12 teams, tentatively; no schedule yet; It’s official: North American League unveiled; Joliet city officials to lobby at Frontier League meetings; Joliet throws monkey wrench in league mergers; New for 2011: North American League; Three indy leagues joining forces for 2011?; Seals: Canaries in the coal mine?

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