Visitors may catch more events at Meco Ball Park

MECO – The manager of the Meco Ball Park has plans to draw more visitors to the venue.

Carl Ward is looking to bring in more events, such as festivals and car shows, to get more people “off their couches.”

The ball park, at 435 W. State St. Ext., was being used Friday night for a varsity softball game between Gloversville and Johnstown.

At the ballpark Friday, Ward – the manager of the establishment – said the location will still host softball games. But he plans to schedule more events to bring people to the park.

“What is there to do around here?” Ward asked.

In the past, Ward said, the park held many different types of events. He remembers watching wrestling matches with Chief Jay Strongbow in the early days of the then-World Wrestling Federation. Ward said his goal is to bring a variety of events back to Meco Ballpark.

There is already an event scheduled for May 31.

The Cabin Fever Festival will have a kickball tournament between softball teams and their families, and live music. Medium-pitch softball and other leagues will be free to use the field as well.

Every month following the Cabin Fever Festival, Ward said, he will schedule more events.

Ward said another goal is to have more weekend use by organizations or families.

Johnstown Mayor Michael Julius said he had seen games played at Meco over the years, and thinks the park’s plans are possible.

“It is nice,” Julius said. “I don’t think it should be a problem at all, it is successful.”

Babe Baldwin, a parent, played at Meco Ball Park when he was in high school. Baldwin said he felt more could be done for children and adults to get them out of the house.

“I don’t think there is a lot to do,” Baldwin said. “They need to have some tournaments out here, something for the kids.”

Johnstown Athletic Director Jim Robare said the park was a nice setting, and he has used the park for men’s league softball games in the summer. Robare said he is confident the park will not have difficulty drawing people to events.

“I just think people in our community need to go out and be active,” Robare said.

Some renovation work has already begun at the ball park, Ward said, with more parking spaces available and a new volleyball court added. Repairs to the softball field and the concession stand also are planned.