Today I am watching the College World Series. This post is about the memories that the College World Series brings back to me, rather than of the College World Series.
The biggest of the memories is of time spent at the Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha during the summer of ’89.
That summer I spent a lot of time in the press box helping a long time family friend run the message center of the scoreboard for the Omaha Royals games. I would help him run the scoreboard whenever I had a chance and would fill in for him when he was out of town. That summer is definitely one of my favorite Baseball Memories, and contributed to the Royals being my favorite team.
The College World Series was also played each year at the stadium, but I never got a chance to work during that time. The press box would have been too full for more than one person to work the message center.
Working in a press box of a Triple A baseball team was very interesting. All the games were broadcast on the radio and we sat right behind the home team announcer. I always enjoyed listening to him while watching the game. He would also give tidbits of information that we would sometimes display on the scoreboard.
The message center was where the players names were displayed and also animations to help drive crowd participation. It was great to be part of the action.
The stadium was the largest in the minor leagues and was really too big for the Omaha Royals. The stadium had slowly been expanded to meet the needs of the College World Series.
A decision was finally made to build a new stadium for the College World Series in downtown Omaha which opened in 2011. It is just a couple blocks away from the auto factory where my Great-Grandfather worked.
The old stadium has since been torn down and the land has been used to expand the Henry Doorly Zoo. The best zoo in the country has some great new exhibits due to the expansion.The area where the stadium stood is now the main parking lot for the zoo. Where the large stadium stood there is also a small baseball park in the middle of the parking lot as a memory.
The Omaha Storm Chasers now play in the 9,000+ seat Werner Park. The corporate sponsor also brings back some memories, but that is another story. The location of the stadium also brings back memories as I at one time lived very close to where it was built.
As I am watching a game this evening I have a trio of commemorative cups lined up in front of the TV. I did not pick these up myself. They were given to me by my Grandma in one of my yearly Christmas boxes. Hamburg, Iowa where my Grandparents lived, is not far from Omaha and they may have picked these up at the game, or maybe just at a yard or estate sale 🙂
These cups are from the 1983 College World Series and were given out the night when the 2 Millionth Fan attended the College World Series in Omaha.
Lots of memories when I watch the College World Series.