By Murray Gleffe
ASHWAUBENON-Ed Krcmar has been around the game of baseball for almost half a century.
So, it was fitting that he was honored in a rededication ceremony held June 2 at the new Ed Krcmar Field at Klipstine Park in Ashwaubenon.
Krcmar came out to home plate and engaged those in attendance with a short speech about memorable games, his grandson and own son, his longtime Jaguars assistant Larry Nelson, and his wife of almost 49 years-Joanne.
“Today is a special day because I am here talking to you while my grandson Parker and my son Jay play/coach for Waupaca (Jaguars opponent on this day),” said Krcmar. “It’s pretty neat to see these 13-year old boys ready to do battle and this game is really close to my heart because of the two teams matching up.”
In 1970 Don Maslinski, Rod Kellam, and the Ashwaubenon village crews built the original baseball field.
For many years the site was the center of Ashwaubenon babe ruth, high school, and legion baseball.
A few years ago, as the new turf field was being installed at Goelz Field, it was discovered that much of the land to the east of the high school was contaminated because it originally was a dump/landfill area.
The cost to clean up the soil was an enormous setback to the community, and for awhile it looked like the park would remain an area void of a new playing field.
Due to the efforts, many consultant hours, and support of people in the village, the baseball field has become a reality.
“I have had the good fortune of coaching baseball for 42 years, 36 of them in Ashwaubenon,” Krcmar added. “In 2008, I was humbled and extremely honored when this field was named after me. I am proud to see it today as a tribute to the village and school district. Now, many young baseball players who enjoy the game can continue to play for the passion that I so dearly love.”
As Krcmar said his final words to cheers and salutes, he stepped out to the pitcher’s mound for one last hurrah.
The pitch didn’t move left or right but traveled straight ahead into the strike zone!
“Now let’s get the first pitch thrown out, and play some ball,” Krcmar stated walking off the field.