Though the rest of the ballpark has been stripped down, the field at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium will be open to the public during the upcoming College World Series.
The Omaha Zoo Foundation, which controls the Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium property, will open the gates from Thursday through Monday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and allow fans to play catch on the old playing field. It's not exactly in the best shape -- after all, there's no groundskeeper grooming the turf -- but it's good enough for fans to go out and stretch their arms. No bats allowed, we're told.
We visited the site during last year's College World Series, and it sounds like little demolition work has been done on the former home of the CWS and the Omaha Royals (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League) since it closed at the end of the 2010 PCL season. Most of the seats were removed and put on sale (some were installed at Werner Park), as was the scoreboard and the outfield fence. But the dugouts and basic structures remain, and the third-base dugout will be open for visitors.
The current plan is to tear down the rest of the ballpark as part of the zoo expansion. The infield and home plate will remain intact.
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