TULSA, Okla — An entire community is teaming up to revitalize Tulsa's Lacy Park Ballpark in north Tulsa.
Robert Pearson remembers growing up in the 1950's playing baseball there. Then the ballpark was known as Lincoln Park and was home to Tulsa's all black semi-pro team, The Tulsa T-Town Clowns.
Now, a sandlot baseball club, The Tulsa Rumblers, and other community members are working together to make a much-needed make-over happen. The organizers behind the project are passionate about baseball. They told 2 News they're very excited about the renovations.
In 2019, The Tulsa Rumblers, a sandlot baseball club, started playing pick up games in the field on Sunday afternoons but it was in desperate need of repairs.
"The first time you hit the ball with a bat and you square it up, the electricity that runs through you it’s irreplaceable,” Bret Spears, pitcher for The Tulsa Rumblers said.
“Weber Reed, who was one of the star players for the T-Town Clowns, was our coach and he told the team that he had two kids that could play with any men,” Pearson said.
One of those two kids who was recruited to play with the Tulsa T-Town Clowns was Pearson, he was 11-years-old when he joined the team.
“Oh! It meant everything to me because I ate, slept, and drank baseball," Pearson said.
That sandlot remained unused for years following the era of the Tulsa T-Town Clowns.
Lacy Park Ball Field is currently part of the Tulsa City Park System.
When public funding to fix the ballpark wasn't available, a grassroots community project took it upon themselves to find the money and resources to make repairs happen.
“Lowe's Owasso gave us over 8,000 dollars worth of supplies so it goes without saying they have been a powerhouse to work with,” Jake Cornwell, co-founder of The Tulsa Rumblers said. “Currently we are still in mid-build, we are still finishing out the siding, we have all the security door in… we still lack one door to button it up…so the exterior is almost finished, and we’ll be caulking and painting all of that."
Cornwell said there is still much work to get done. He said they are asking for volunteers and help to get the water and plumbing working again.
Sunday, Pearson returned to the field once again to throw the first pitch for the Tulsa Rumblers vs. the Tulsa Breeze game.
He said the revitalization project will bring back the sandlot he remembers playing in as a kid.
“I wish it was like that again,” Pearson said.
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