Rent One Park, former home of the Southern Illinois Miners (Frontier League), has been purchased and will transition into a hub for sports tourism in Marion, IL.
After a 14-year run as the home of the Miners, the ballpark was shuttered at the end of the 2021 Frontier League season when owners Jayne and John Simmons announced they were ceasing Miners operations and retiring to spend more time with their family. At that time they hinted that other uses for 7,000-capacity Rent One Park as a multiuse facility were on the horizon.
And they were. The ballpark is under contract to be sold to Marion Center Project LLC, with partner Rodney Cabaness saying that it would transition to future use as a centerpiece for a new sports-tourism complex in Marion. The group, which also Illinois Star Centre Mall and Kokopelli Golf Club, is working with Florida-based Sports Facilities Companies on a sports-tourism plan that would cater to youth tournaments and perhaps more in the future. Cabaness unveiled the purchase and plan to the Marion City Council this week:
“Sports tourism is one of the things we have found to be a huge draw for people,” he told city commissioners. “We decided with the retail and entertainment development, sports tourism really fits and needs to be part of what we are doing. The stadium will be the cornerstone to sports tourism.”
Marion Center Project Partner Chad Holland said the sale should be finalized in early January, and then he expects to begin announcing events and programs at the facility.
“It will be more than just baseball. We have some events and other things that we are working on for the stadium and we should have some pretty exciting news in the next month,” Holland said.
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