Aurora University works with city to bring baseball team 'home'
Aurora University and the city of Aurora, Illinois, are cooperating in a plan to provide the school's baseball team a home field.
The plan calls for the university to invest nearly $60,000 in improvements in Joe Bernard Field at the city's Solfisburg Park in return for use of the facility for home games. The Spartans have not had a home park since an expansion of the university's campus three years ago forced the team to use fields outside of Aurora.
"We are excited about the growth of Aurora University; however, we were sad to see Spartan baseball leave our city three years ago," Aurora Mayor Thomas J. Weisner said.
"For years, students and Aurora residents enjoyed watching our hometown team each spring. "We felt it was important to bring Spartan baseball back home again. Working together, we have developed a solution that will benefit the players, students and community."
The city recently spent nearly $1 million to improve Solfisburg Park, including the baseball field. The university investment will pay for an expansion of dugouts and outfield fences, installation of wind screens and foul poles, and university signage.
The Spartans have enjoyed considerable success in recent years regardless of the field they’ve played on. Aurora enters this season as one of the winningest teams of this decade, including trips to the Division III Baseball Championship finals in Grand Chute, Wisconsin, in 2004 and 2006.
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