MiLB operator Quint Studer, who is managing the Beloit Snappers (Low A; Midwest League) with the intent to buy the team, says a new downtown ballpark should ensure the team’s survival in the wake of a Minor League Baseball makeover.
In an interview with a local radio station, Studer said he expects to buy the team once a new Professional Baseball Agreement of some sort regarding Minor League Baseball is finalized. Groundbreaking on the new $32-million downtown Beloit ballpark is now scheduled for May, he added, and not only is a firm owned by Diane Hendricks building and managing the new ballpark, another Hendricks firm, ABC Supply, will purchase naming rights. From WCLO:
The $34 million stadium project will be built and owned by the Riverfront Stadium Authority, funded in large part by ABC Supply owner Diane Hendricks.
Studer intends on signing a 20-year lease for his Snappers to use the stadium, and he said the group is hoping to break ground later this month.
He told The Stan Milam Show on WCLO that ABC Supply will have the naming rights to the stadium, which would also host football games, soccer matches, community events and concerts.
“One of the things Diane [Hendricks] wants to do is build it into early learning,” Studer said. “She wants to make the stadium not just a baseball place, but a place to learn, a place to appreciate history.”
Besides managing the Snappers this season, Studer is owner of the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (Class AA; Southern League) and was the driving force behind the construction of Blue Wahoos Stadium.
The proposed ballpark will feature a grandstand with administrative offices and player facilities, concessions and restrooms, 360-degree concourse, a center-field outdoor group areas, a kids’ play area and a 300+-capacity stadium club that can be used year-round. The main concourse will wrap 360 degrees around the field and features a main entry gate at center field. Outdoor group areas will be located in left field and right field with a kid’s playground and inflatable area planned for the outfield concourse. An artificial-turf field would allow for uses other than professional baseball.
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