The Green Bay Bullfrogs (summer collegiate; Northwoods League) signed a new five-year lease for Joannes Stadium, with one important out: the team can leave if a new downtown ballpark emerges.
The team has been working on a new-ballpark plan for several years now. While the plan is undeniably cool — a new ballpark combined with a restaurant would sit on the shores of the Fox River, allowing fans to boat to the game — it’s been held up by the lack of investors and the reluctance from city officials to fund a new facility. In addition, talk of a new ballpark near Lambeau Field, home of the Green Bay Packers, has subsided.
So Bullfrogs owner Jeff Royle went ahead with a lease extension for Joannes Stadium, the 1950s-era facility once home to minor-league baseball and slugger Frank Howard. The Bullfrogs have made plenty of improvements to the ballpark; under the terms of the lease the team will spend $10,000 more on upgrades during the course of the lease. And Royle will have the flexibility to walk away from the lease should the $12-million new ballpark arrives.
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