ROCK HILL, S.C. - Spartanburg, S.C., is home to one of America's oldest minor league baseball stadiums – a little-known fact that won't be so obscure come October.
Faculty members Mark Nortz, instructor of mass communication, and Albert Bolognese, assistant professor of sport management, have created a documentary, "Duncan Park Stadium: 85 Years of Baseball Memories," for ETV South Carolina. The 30-minute documentary, which includes interviews with personal stories as well as rare pictures and memorabilia, will air Oct. 20 on "Southern Lens," a featured program on ETV South Carolina. The documentary will be rebroadcast Oct. 24 on ETV.
Bolognese, a Philadelphia Phillies fan, grew up in Pennsylvania outside Philadelphia and often heard about Duncan Park Stadium in South Carolina. When he came to Winthrop, he started researching the field and discovered its rich history. The stadium, which opened July 8, 1926, is one of the oldest minor league baseball stadiums in America. When the Spartanburg Phillies played their final game there in September 1994, it was the oldest minor league stadium in America hosting full-season minor league baseball. And if the stadium's green seats – more than 500 green wooden seats the Philadelphia Phillies sent to Spartanburg when Connie Mack Stadium closed – are authentic, they are "baseball history," noted Bolognese.
The more Bolognese learned, the more he realized he'd discovered a great story. So he teamed up with Nortz to make a documentary about the stadium and the people who remember it so fondly.
The interviews in "Duncan Park Stadium: 85 Years of Baseball Memories" reflect not only a "simpler time of life" but a "definite sense of community," said Nortz. "People tie events that happened in life to events that happened in the stadium."
While Duncan Park is an important piece of baseball history, Nortz said that he and Bolognese hope people see that the stadium is still viable, a place where "new memories can be made."
For more information about "Duncan Park Stadium," contact Nortz at email@example.com or Bolognese at firstname.lastname@example.org.