Jackie Robinson Ballpark
Over the past 5 years we have had the honor of being the caretaker of the field at Jackie Robinson Ballpark . Its been a great relationship with City of Daytona Beach and the Daytona Cubs. The ballpark has quite the history. Jackie Robinson played in the stadium during the spring training of 1946 with the Montreal Royals. He unfortunately banned from playing in Jacksonville and Sanford, but not in Daytona. His professional debut and first at bat was in this park on March 17, 1946 (an exhibition game against his parent club the Brooklyn dodgers.) The rest was history and soon after this event, he would become the first African-American player to reach Big Leagues.
The stadium has been used since the early 1900’s as a professional baseball facility and has been a member of the Florida State League since the 1920’s. The stadium has underwent numerous renovations and improvements over the years due to its age and hurricanes. The history of this ballpark holds stories of both good and bad times in our countries past. To think the right field grandstand, which still stands today, was once used as a segregated viewing area due to laws imposed during the "Jim Crow era".
The stadium was actually used in 1972 as the Montreal Expos Spring Training Home. Over the years it has suffered damages due to a few big named storms. Hurricane Donna and Floyd did the greatest damage over the years but after the storms the city rebuilt the stadium.
The Stadium name was changed in 1990 to Jackie Robinson Stadium in memory of Jackie Robinson.
Its an old fashioned ballpark with a lot of charm and has a good shot at being added to the National Historic Register to keep the history of this stadium in check for generations to come.
This past year a new scoreboard went in. (manually operated) A wonderful kids play area and the city plans to rebuild the field this fall which we have already started to collect info for the potential renovation. You should check out stadium if you are ever in the area and walk through the concourse to view the plaques and history of the ballpark.