City of Wichita officials have scheduled a ribbon-cutting ceremony for 10 a.m. on Thursday to celebrate a new artificial turf baseball field in historic McAdams Park, 1329 E. 16th St. The baseball field is the city’s first public field to have artificial turf, which will reduce weather delays, improve scheduling and provide a quality field of play. It has dual markings so that it can also be used for girls’ softball games.
“This new field will offer more youth a chance to play baseball and learn valuable life skills,” said Council Member Lavonta Williams, whose north-side District I includes McAdams. The field, funded with $1.4 million from the capital improvement budget, represents the first phase of a three-year park improvement project. Designed and constructed by Multicon, Inc., the field offers a nostalgic motif to reflect an earlier era and pay homage to the league’s namesake, baseball legend Jackie Robinson who wore number 42.
Eagle sports columnist Bob Lutz founded League 42, with the goal of giving more local youth a chance to play baseball. Since its inception in 2013, League 42 has grown to include 400 players. Generous donors and volunteers help provide uniforms, equipment, coaching and mentoring for a capped fee of $30 a family. League 42 also provides life skills for players. Its volunteers have been working with Park &
Recreation Department officials to repair, repaint and refurbish the existing fields.
Wichita Park & Recreation supports eight recreation centers, nine swimming pools, 55 athletic fields, five golf courses, six interactive fountains, numerous adult and youth-based activities and athletics programs and 2,407 acres of rights-of-way.