T H E
G E OR G E
W A S H I N G TO N
U N I V E R S I T Y
TO T HE PL AT E GW Baseball at Barcroft Park
For more than a century,
baseball has been a part of student life at GW. A piece of the history and rich tradition of the university, students have donned the Buff and Blue uniforms to play Americaâ€™s pastime in our nationâ€™s capital for generations. Today, GW alumni, parents, and friends have an opportunity to be a part of the next great chapter of GW Baseball. With the renovation of Barcroft Park in Arlington, Virginia, the Colonials will finally have a place to proudly call home.
A PLACE TO CALL HOME GW Baseball received its first “home” field in 1904, when Van Ness Park was acquired just south of the White House. Unfortunately for the new Colonials, their home field advantage wouldn’t last long. In what would be the first of many displacements and relocations, the property was sold only two years later and the team was temporarily disbanded. Without a regular playing field, the ballplayers relented to on-and-off play for nearly 25 seasons. It wasn’t until the 1930s that they reorganized and took to the diamond at Griffith Stadium, home of the Washington Senators. Once again, their homestand was short-lived. They were soon relocated to the West Ellipse—a field so close to the White House that President Harry Truman was known to take in an occasional Colonials game from his balcony. Over the next 50 years, the GW Baseball team was shuffled from one ad hoc venue to the next. They played at the RFK Auxiliary Field in the mid-80s, shared the turf with Robinson Secondary School in Fairfax, borrowed Georgetown’s field for a few split-schedule seasons, and were eventually dispensed to Francis Field—a park at 26th and M St. that brought the unique challenge of a drastically short left field that terminated at Rock Creek Parkway, and a right field that had no fence at all.
It wasn’t until 1993 that the Colonials crossed the river and made their home at Barcroft Park in Arlington, Va. While the field regrettably lacks many of the amenities of a collegiatelevel park, it has been a constant home for the Colonials for nearly 20 years, and maintains great potential to become a top-notch facility. GW Baseball team, Southern Conference Champs, 1960
The Need The current Field #6 at Barcroft Park consists of a small set of bleachers and a mediocre playing field. The grass is patchy and dying, the outfield fence is rusted chain-link, and the dugouts lack storage and functionality. The sub-par clay on the pitcherâ€™s mound requires constant packing and repacking, and even then, it is often unfriendly to the pitcher. The current site houses no bullpens, no concessions stand, and no public restrooms. Also, nowhere in the park is there a semblance of GW colors or logos.
Because the field uses natural grass and clay, additional work--often performed by GW team membersâ€”is required to keep the field playable. This means that on top of a full schedule of classes, homework, baseball practice and game days, the team dedicates a number of hours each week to the upkeep of its home field.
The Opportunity With your help, the Colonials can finally have a ballpark that reflects the caliber of the team it houses. Upgrades such as synthetic turf, expanded seating, better parking, new bullpens, and a dugout that bears the name George Washington, will create an environment that equips the coaches, empowers the team, and accommodates the fans. A renovated stadium will allow the players to train and compete more effectively, as well as alleviate a large portion of their groundskeeping responsibilities. This renovation of Barcroft Park will set the stage for the next great chapter in GW Baseball. We ask for your support in this transformation.
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Entrance Plaza – A controlled-access entrance plaza provides an enhanced experience for fans, as well as flexibility for hospitality, giveaways, and special events.
Expanded Parking –A new parking lot will accommodate 100 cars and two team buses.
Upgraded Field – The field will be upgraded to a top-of-the-line synthetic turf, the fencing replaced, and a new windscreen installed. The centerfield fence will also have a “batter’s eye” incorporated.
New Backstop - The backstop area will be completely redone to include a padded knee wall with a brick appearance and high soft netting.
Press Box –The upper floor of a two-tiered structure behind the grandstand will be a press box for sports information, media, scouts, etc.
NEW Bullpens – Bullpen areas will be constructed beyond the outfield fence, with a gate exiting to the right field and left field corners.
Improved Retail/Concessions Space – The lower floor of a twotiered structure behind the grandstand will be a concessions and retail area.
Pro-style Dugouts – New sunken dugouts will accommodate forty players/coaches/trainers and will include wall and overhead storage for equipment, as well as a bat rack. Lockable storage space for both dugouts will also be added.
Seating – Stadium seating will be expanded to 450 seats and will extend between first base and third base, rounding the backstop. Contingent on fundraising support, complete or partial overhead coverage could be incorporated.
T H E S TA RT I N G L I N E U P The university will break ground for the new stadium in October 2011 and will use the upgraded field in spring 2012. Projected GW costs for the project are anticipated to be at least $3 million, which will be secured through various sources including philanthropy. In exchange for this investment, GW has secured rights to use the field for the next 20 years. GW will share costs of maintenance with Arlington County.
Phase 1: Upgraded Field In order to have the ballpark ready for the 2012 season, the first phase of renovation will address the playing field, bullpens, and dugouts. Construction of this phase begins October 2011.
on deck Phase 2: Upgraded Stadium The second round of renovations will include enhancements to the seating, press box, and concessions area. This phase will begin in late October/early November 2011.
in the hole Phase 3: Additional Enhancements If applicable, amenities that are contingent on fundraising support (such as an upgraded scoreboard, partial overhead awning, and locker rooms) will be incorporated in the final phase of the renovation.
“The George Washington University Strategic Planning Committee for Athletics clearly identified a need for improved facilities for many of GW’s student-athletes. Combined with the recent dramatic improvements to the Charles E. Smith Center and the Mt. Vernon soccer and lacrosse field, the construction of an outstanding new baseball field at Barcroft Park will as clearly demonstrate the university is committed to excellence in intercollegiate athletics.” Randy Levine President, New York Yankees The George Washington University, Class of 1977 Chair, GW’s Strategic Planning Committee for Athletics
ONCE A COLONIAL,
ALWAYS A COLONIAL.
Baseball enthusiast George Will once wrote: â€œIt is a truism that we shape our buildings and then they shape us.â€? He was, of course, referring to baseball stadiums. The renovation of Field #6 at Barcroft Park brings the opportunity to shape not only the home of GW Baseball, but the next generation of student-athletes as well. This initiative has the potential to strengthen player performance, encourage fan attendance, and show our opponents, our community, and most importantly our team that the George Washington University and its alumni stand behind its ballplayers.
To support the GW Baseball program and this important initiative, please contact: Omar Bell Division of Development, Athletics 202-994-9362 (office) 202-747-4583 (cell) email@example.com
This brochure highlights the history of baseball at GW and the upcoming transformation of Barcroft field.