A new field will become a game changer for more than just student-athletes
Springfield College has partnered with Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr. and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation to jointly design and build a one-of-a-kind intercollegiate and adaptive baseball park to replace Berry-Allen Field. The adaptive baseball park will include a custom-designed field with a cushioned, rubberized surface that makes it accessible for special needs players to get from base to base.
Springfield College will collaborate with local organizations to complete the project, including the Miracle League of Western Massachusetts.
The project fits with both the mission of Springfield College—to educate students in spirit, mind, and body to serve others—and the mission of the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation to build character and teach critical life lessons to at-risk young people through sports-themed programs.
The first of its kind, this project will incorporate the new adaptive field within a new traditional field.
Referred to as “The Springfield Model” by the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation, the new facilities will include an artificial turf field, bullpens, and batting cages; installation of a new grandstand and press box; and a new scoreboard, sound system, and sports lighting system. Renovations will also include broadcasting capabilities and landscaping.
“In addition to providing a first-class facility for our student-athletes, the multipurpose, synthetic-turf field and facility will be a lab for our students and faculty in rehabilitation studies. It will also be a venue at which our sport management students can earn valuable experience and leadership skills running community events and tournaments,” said Springfield College Director of Athletics Craig F. Poisson, G’90, DPE’99.
Youth athletes from the Miracle League, Special Olympics, and local baseball programs are expected to benefit from the renovation.
“Student-athletes will be competing on one of the finest intercollegiate baseball facilities in our region,” said Head Baseball Coach Mark Simeone.
Mark Joao, a Springfield College junior infielder, agreed: “It has got the team talking and excited,” he said. “I think the turf will give us an advantage because we will be able to get on the field earlier than most schools. In past years our first practice on the field is the day before our first game.”
If you are interested in learning more about the project or ways that you can support it, please contact Joe Long ’95, G’97, major gifts officer, at (413) 748-3775 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Did you know?
A gift of $50,000 provides the opportunity to name a space in the new baseball facility.