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The Blue & Gray Press | February 17, 2018

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New city baseball stadium strikes new home nearby

The City of Fredericksburg will soon be home to the Hagerstown Suns baseball team, a class A affiliate of the Washington Nationals baseball team.NewBallfield

The Hagerstown Suns are currently located in Hagerstown, Md.

The team is considering two sites in Celebrate Virginia South near the Fredericksburg Expo and Conference Center as their home stadium, According to Beverly Cameron, Fredericksburg city manager.

In addition to the stadium, the team will also be constructing five or six amateur facilities for training in close proximity, according to Cameron.

Cameron said the total cost of the stadium and facilities is approximately $29 million. Diamond Nation, a baseball and softball tournament and training complex based in New Jersey, will assist with the costs.

The city is providing a variety of economic incentives to the team and passing incentive grants for the team based on their performance, according to Cameron.

The city also committed to build the parking lot, which will be adjacent to the stadium, at a cost of approximately $7 million, said Cameron.

Cameron said the Suns are hoping to be instituted in time for the 2015 baseball season.

Annie Izzard, a freshman, is looking forward to having a baseball team in Fredericksburg.

“I like baseball. I hope that the team is really good,” said Izzard.

Once the team decides which of the two sites they will use, they can begin the review process of planning and zoning, said Cameron.

Sarah Bergstresser, a senior geography major, said having a baseball team will benefit the city.

“It will bring in money and provide entertainment,” said Bergstresser.

Cameron believes that having a baseball team will have a positive impact on the city’s economy.

“It will bring more tourists and visitors to the area, and that will increase spending in hotels and restaurants,” said Cameron.

According to Cameron, the team will also provide an additional recreational opportunity for the city.

“I think that it’s a type of attraction that really improves that general sense of community and brings the community together,” said Cameron. “It has that positive spirit of good will rooting for the home team.”