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The History File: Riverview's Dedication
01/07/2011 12:46 PM ET

Thousands Hail New Riverview Stadium as Outstanding Baseball Plant in U.S.

From the Clinton Herald (prior to the Sunday, May 9, 1937 dedication)

Complete in every necessary facility, Riverview Stadium - to be dedicated Sunday - is a model baseball plant, not only from the standpoint of visual attractiveness but also from the standpoint of permanence, convenience, utility and comfort.

Built of steel, reinforced concrete, brick and cinder block, the structure is 99 and 9-10 percent fireproof; its permanence is obvious to the casual onlooker.

Six ramps permit entrance and egress quickly and easily, opening on the concrete apron skirting the stadium. Comfortable redwood seats are provided in all sections of the stadium save the three rows immediately in front of the wide aisle at the head of the ramps: the first three rows are divided into boxes and are equipped with individual steel opera chairs.

Modern Press Box

The section immediately to the rear of home plate, and a 60-foot section on each side of the center section, is protected with heavy mesh wire mounted on steel cables.

At the rear and top of the center section of the stadium is the screen-enclosed press box, with telegraph and telephone facilities. Control of the public address system will be regulated from the press box: the system has super-power speakers mounted beneath the roof at each end of the stadium. Outlets for field microphones are also provided in connection with the main microphone located in the press box.

Beneath the stadium in the center section are located the business and private offices of the Clinton board of park commissioners, the business office of the Clinton Baseball Club, Inc., and the service room which houses the heating equipment. All of the various facilities beneath the stadium are steam heated.

Much Equipment

Adjacent to the two center ramps are the public rooms, completely equipped in every detail.

Midway in the north section of the stadium is the clubhouse of the Clinton Owls of the Three-I league; equipment includes a battery of showers, hot water heater, steel lockers and all other necessary appurtenances.

Other sections of the north wing provide garages for park board trucks, workrooms and supply rooms for the maintenance department.

The west wing shelters the visiting team's clubhouse and a private room for the umpires, equipped the same as the Clinton clubhouse. South of the team room are additional garages, supply rooms and warehouse facilities.

From the team rooms, the players proceed through concrete tunnels to the dugouts which are permanent and located conventionally near first and third base.

High Class Field

The playing field promises to be one of the finest in the central west, with a special grass infield identical to that provided in major league parks. Outside the basepaths similar sod extends halfway into the outfield with the remainder of the playing area covered with sod obtained at Root Memorial Park where extensive parking facilities and tennis courts are being laid out in the area from which the sod is being taken.

Riverview field is equipped for night baseball with one of the finest minor league floodlighting plants. Forty reflectors, each carrying three 1500-watt globes, are mounted in varying numbers at eight stations arranged at intervals about the field. Sixty-foot poles carry the field reflectors; the batteries adjacent to home plate are mounted on steel towers above the stadium roof, thus obviating any interference with the view of spectators.

System Works Okeh

The floodlighting system was given a preliminary trial Friday night, proved even more effective than had been anticipated. The floodlights will be lighted again Sunday night during the closing hours of the dedicatory "open house," will be used thereafter for all home games of the Clinton Owls, except Sunday and holiday contests.

An extensive system of lights illuminates the stadium when the floodlights are not in use; attractive copper lanterns stud the exterior above the six ramps with others grouped on the ticket headquarters and the park board offices.

The concrete walk bordering the stadium, bounded with metal fencing at a distance of 25 feet, will be illuminated by small floodlights mounted on the roof; the floodlights on the west wing will be adjusted to illuminate the two-block long parking area which immediately adjoins the stadium on the west. The parking area will be covered with white crushed rock bound with asphaltic binder.

Ticket Office

The ticket office is centered in the main entrance at the northwest corner of the stadium, facing Sixth Avenue North and the north entrance to the parking area. Two entrance gates provide admission through turnstiles; two larger gates and other gates at intervals in the fence bordering the stadium will permit rapid and uncongested departure.

Joining the stadium at each end and completely circling the field, a nine-foot sheet steel fence completes the enclosure. The permanent concrete bleacher facilities to the south of the stadium can be augmented when necessary by installation of temporary bleachers along the right and left field foul lines.

Providing seats for more than 4,000 spectators in a park setting of unusual beauty, Riverview field is regarded as one of few really ideal baseball plants.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.