Loeb Stadium

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Coordinates: 40°24′45″N 86°52′18″W / 40.412597°N 86.871568°W / 40.412597; -86.871568 Loeb Stadium is a stadium in Columbian Park Lafayette, Indiana, United States. It is primarily used for baseball and has recently been the home of the Lafayette Aviators of the Prospect League.

Previously, it was the home of Ohio Valley Redcoats of the independent Frontier League, and later the Lafayette Leopards of the now defunct Great Central League.

History[edit]

Opened in 1940, Loeb Stadium has a capacity of 3,500 people. From 1942 until 1945, the stadium hosted Spring Training for Major League Baseball's Cleveland Indians when teams were forced to hold their training closer to their home cities due to restrictions in place as a result of the United States' participation in World War II. At that time, the stadium was home to a Class A affiliate of the Indians.

It also hosted the minor league Lafayette Red Sox, a founding franchise of the Midwest League in 1956 [1] In 1957, the Red Sox moved to Waterloo, Iowa, and later to Lansing, Michigan, where they are known today as the Lansing Lugnuts.

In amateur baseball, it was home to the Colt League Baseball World Series from 1974-2017, until that event moved to Rent One Park in Marion, Illinois in 2018.[2][3] The Jefferson High School Broncos use the stadium for their home games, competing in games sanctioned by the Indiana High School Athletic Association. It has hosted the IHSAA baseball state finals four times, most recently in 2016.

In 2015, the Jamestown Jammers moved to Lafayette and began play in the Prospect League as the Aviators.

Renovation[edit]

At the conclusion of the 2019 Prospect League season, the stadium closed for a renovation project and will reopen in early 2021. During that time, the Aviators will play at Purdue University's Alexander Field.[4].

The project, estimated to cost approximately $17 million, will see the stadium's configuration flipped, placing home plate in what is currently center field.[5] The current seating area will be removed and be made part of Columbian Park surrounding the stadium. New suites and outdoor group seating areas will be added. The stadium's grass playing surface will be replaced with a synthetic turf, which will allow the facility to host additional types of events, and the seating capacity will decrease to 2,500 from its current 3,500. Additionally, the playing surface will be lowered by seven feet, allowing for improved sightlines from all stadium seats. The project will be paid for using economic development income tax (EDIT) rather than property taxes.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/bullpen/Loeb_Stadium
  2. ^ "Colt World Series Comes to Marion, IL". www.coltworldseries.org. Retrieved 2019-08-07.
  3. ^ "2018 Colt World Series Update". Southern Illinois Miners. 2018-04-24. Retrieved 2019-08-07.
  4. ^ "Lafayette Aviators to play at Purdue's Alexander Field in 2020". Journal & Courier. Retrieved 2019-08-07.
  5. ^ "New Stadium | Lafayette Aviators Baseball Loeb Stadium Lafayette, Indiana 47904". www.lafayettebaseball.com. Retrieved 2019-08-07.
  6. ^ "LOEB Stadium". spark.adobe.com. Retrieved 2019-08-07.