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This article was published 22/6/2018 (1436 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
It has been a long time coming, but upgrades to Transcona Stadium are coming to a close.
An opening ceremony was held on May 26 to kick off the annual baseball tournament held at the stadium.
"We thought it was a perfect weekend to honour Henri Constant, who has taken care of that field at Transcona Stadium for over three decades," said Dan Cox, president of Red River Valley Baseball. "We wanted to ensure his legacy is kept with that field."
Constant, who is retired and now lives in St. Boniface, was presented with a sign designating the field Henri Constant Field.
"The official naming has to go through committee, but we wanted to honour him and show him what the sign will look (if approved)," Cox said.
Over the past year, the grounds have received significant upgrades, thanks in large part to grants that total of $120,000 from Transcona’s land dedication reserve. All the fencing has been replaced, the infield fill has been replaced and releveled, dugouts have been expanded, and the old bleachers replaced.
"A lot of people miss the old ones, but this is very suitable for those who come to watch now," Cox said of the bleachers.
The iconic Transcona Stadium scoreboard building is in the process of being revamped. Cox said the roof has been replaced, painting is underway and the electrical is currently being upgraded.
Red River Valley Baseball covered half of the nearly $50,000 renovation to the building, with donations from Archambault Realty, Ventura Developments and Transcona BIZ, while a community incentive grant covered $23,000 of the cost.
The final piece of the puzzle is the conversion of the old bathroom building into a permanent storage building for the league.
"We have a few more things to be done but that’s for future discussion," said Cox, who envisions the stadium becoming a premiere facility, with batting cages and bullpens potentially added down the line.
"The improvements are great," he added. "It allows us to field more teams there, which is important because there’s not many fields for us that can fit AAA bantam players (14 to 15 year olds) in northeast Winnipeg."
Sheldon Birnie is a reporter/photographer for the Free Press Community Review. The author of Missing Like Teeth: An Oral History of Winnipeg Underground Rock (1990-2001), his writing has appeared in journals and online platforms across Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. A husband and father of two young children, Sheldon enjoys playing guitar and rec hockey when he can find the time. Email him at email@example.com Call him at 204-697-7112