Wichita will bid farewell to Lawrence-Dumont Stadium with one final baseball game on Saturday.
The last game in the 84-year-old stadium will feature former area baseball players, along with local celebrities and athletes. It will be followed by a screening of “The Sandlot,” food trucks and music. The night will wrap up with a fireworks show.
Park and Recreation director Troy Houtman said he didn’t want to just “walk away” from the historic stadium.
“We wanted to do something that was memorable for the facility and treat the facility the way it has treated us all these years,” Houtman said.
Houtman said while he is sad to say goodbye to the stadium, he is excited about the future of baseball in Wichita. Last month, the city announced it would build a new stadium to house a new minor league team by 2020.
He said Lawrence-Dumont has served the city well but it is “beyond repair” and unable to handle top-level minor league baseball. The new stadium, which will be built in the same location as Lawrence-Dumont, will be a much-needed update, he said.
“The whole idea is to bring in the next generation,” Houtman said. “And hopefully the next 80 years of great baseball in a new stadium.”
Ray Strunk is an intern in the KMUW News Lab.