Veterans and Baseball – It Doesn’t Get Much More American Than Veterans Playing the First Game to Break In The New St. Louis Stadium Turf at Ballparks of America

As part of the nation’s largest Veteran’s Week event in Branson, Missouri, Ballparks of America hosts the first game of baseball at its newly completed St. Louis Stadium, the nation’s most sophisticated youth baseball facility.
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NOVEMBER 11, 2016
Media Contact: Jennifer Langford  |  931.510.7703 

In Honor of Veterans Day, Veterans Play the First Game Ever at the New St. Louis Stadium at Ballparks of America

As part of the nation’s largest Veteran’s Week event in Branson, Missouri, Ballparks of America hosts the first game of baseball at its newly completed St. Louis Stadium, the nation’s most sophisticated youth baseball facility

Branson, MO (November 11, 2016) – To celebrate Veterans Day, Ballparks of America, the nation’s newest youth baseball campus in Branson, MO,  invited veterans to inaugurate its recently completed St. Louis Stadium,  in an epic “Old-Timers Game” on Thursday, November 10, 2016. St. Louis Stadium is the most sophisticated facility ever built for youth baseball with synthetic turf, MLB-level seating and an adjacent clubhouse.

“It only seems fitting to honor those who served our country during times when MLB Hall-of-Famers served alongside many of them,” says Hamilton Chang, CEO of Ballparks of America. “I can’t help but thinking there was a lot of talk about baseball in the barracks; and today, we’re teaching our kids about commitment, teamwork and perseverance just as our heroes demonstrated all three at war and on the field.”

The event was part of a week of festivities as thousands of veterans made their annual trip to Branson, Missouri to be honored for their service at one of the nation’s largest and most notable Veteran’s Week held from November 5-11.

“In a region known for its community commitment to family, faith, friends, flag and future – the values bestowed upon the Ozarks by what they call their ‘Ozark Mountain Legacy’ – the entire community rolls out the carpet to honor America’s military service,” said Brenda Meadows who coordinated the events on behalf of the local Veteran’s Task Force. “There’s something magical about bringing our heroes to this facility and engaging them in an ‘Old-Timers Game’ of baseball at the incredible new St. Louis Stadium where they can reminisce about their younger years playing sandlot, and marveling at how youth baseball has evolved since then.”

One of the participants of the historic game was Art Bowman of Sapulpa, OK, who served in the Korean War from 1950-1952 with a New York Yankee and a Brooklyn Dodger during his tour.  “We called them ‘Big Lou’ and ‘Little Ricky’” said Bowman. “Lou was our platoon sergeant in the 45th Infantry Division and played for the Yankees. Ricky was radio commander to Captain Miller; if I recall, he was with the Dodgers.”

“Ballparks of America salutes America’s Veterans, highlighting those who served it up on the field and served our country at wartime,” added Chang. “The World Series overlapped with World War II when icons like Joe DiMaggio, Stan Musial and Jackie Robinson enlisted. Then there was also Cleveland Indians “Bullet” Bob Feller who earned five campaign ribbons and eight battle stars in active duty combat, returning home to heroically perform on the diamond as a seven-time All Star.”


Experience the Future of Youth Baseball at Ballparks of America where champions come to play in 2017. Registration is now open. For more information about our 10u-13u tournaments, visit For more information or to request the 2017 Tournament Packet, email Doc Snyder, President-Baseball Operations: For Media Inquiries, contact Hamilton Chang, CEO and Chief Baseball Dad:

About Ballparks of America: Ballparks of America offers America’s Finest Youth Baseball Tournaments. Our goal is simple – to allow 10 to 13 year olds to experience the joy of BFF: Baseball, Friends and Family. We do this first by offering players the opportunity to play at 2/3-size replicas of 5 iconic stadiums spanning the history of baseball. From lighted premium synthetic turf fields to ivy, you’ll feel like you’re in the Big League. Plus, we’re one of the only stay-and- play facilities nationwide where players experience a week rooming with friends at our MLB-style Team Suites outfitted with HDTV, spaces to hang-out and rec rooms for off-diamond games. All residence halls are air conditioned and feature private showers to add to the professional experience. And for the whole family, Ballparks of America is placed in the heart of the breathtaking Ozark Mountains in the family-focused vacation destination of Branson, MO, voted #1 in Trivago’s “2016 U.S. Best Value Cities” for Vacations Destination, and ranking in TripAdvisor’s “Top 25 U.S. Destinations” five years in a row. You’ll be steps from some of America’s finest theme parks, designer label shopping and a variety of dining options, three pristine lakes famous for record bass fishing and recreational water sports like sailing, skiing and parasailing, as well as a 100-mile hiking trail network and a dozen award-winning golf courses.


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