Despite its history and fairly recent run with professional baseball, Bringhurst Field‘s future is loaded with question marks.
Bringhurst Field has a long and distinguished history, having first opened in 1933 and hosting professional baseball off and on for decades. The Alexandria Aces account for the bulk of the ballpark’s history, with various incarnations of the team appearing at the Bringhurst Field through the 2013 season, which was the Aces’ first and only campaign in the United Baseball League.
Left without a steady tenant over the last several years, Bringhurst FIeld has fallen on hard times. In December 2014, a fire caused significant damage to both the ballpark’s main offices and home clubhouse. Discussions have taken place among Alexandria, LA officials about what to do with the facility, and specifically if it is worth preserving in some form. Months before the fire, talk had begun about either doing some work to the ballpark or removing most of it to make way for an Alexandria Zoological Park expansion.
For right now, however, it seems that there are no decisions regarding Bringhurst Field on the horizon. More from KALB:
“Well I mean there is no timetable,” said Daniel Williams, Alexandria’s Director of Community Services. “It’s kind of one of those things you don’t want to put a timetable on it because you want to be able to act accordingly and act smart with the things you’re doing.”
“It’s really on the backburner right now,” said Lee Rubin, City Council President. “There is so many things going on right now in the recreation field that we need to finish those things up.”
In May 2014, the city passed a recreation millage to improve the zoo and add recreation across the city. The city said they’re focused on improving Johnny Downs Recreation Complex, adding tennis courts and a dog park to City Park as well as more programming across the city.
“If you look at the price tag for all the projects we’ve already done including tennis, dog park and Johnny Downs those kind of equal to Bringhurst,” said Williams. “So if you’re looking at the use and priority use I think those things are very important right now.”
Others sections of KALB’s story convey some sentiment from locals who want to see the ballpark saved in some form, which is unsurprising given its history. Alexandria will just have to decide if any form of preservation or repurposing is feasible after nearly three full summers without a tenant.