A former Alexandria Beetles owner and a former Minnesota Twin are teaming up to keep summer-collegiate ball at Knute Nelson Park for 2013.
We’ve reported several times on the demise of the Alexandria Beetles (summer collegiate; Northwoods League), offered for sale this offseason before the league took over operations from Shawn Reilly.
League officials rallied with a pretty good plan: former owner Scott Allen will team up with Shane Schmidt and Adam Barta, owner of Minnesota Baseball Academy, as owners of a team replacing the Beetles: the Alexandria Blue Anchors. Managing the new team: former Minnesota Twins player and coach Al Newman. Joe Dempsey is GM of the new team.
Alexandria is a small market even by summer-collegiate standards; it’s primarily a resort community filled with tourists and seasonal residents in the summer. Also, Knute Nelson Park isn’t exactly the most inviting of venues (if you go, bring your insect repellent, as the mosquitoes are thick in July and August). The Beetles have always been near the bottom of the Northwoods League attendance figures, but that’s a little misleading: under Allen and former GM Ryan Voz — now running the Willmar Stingers — the team succeeded financially by attracting higher-paying fans to a sponsored group area. We assume the same sort of strategy will take place under the guidance of Allen and crew. There have been some pretty good players spending time as a Beetle — Allen Craig and Lucas Duda among them — and it’s good to see the summer-collegiate tradition living on.
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