Recreation

Baseball Fields in Kalamazoo

Oscar Coleman was an early Kalamazoo resident who helped organize the first “official” village baseball team about 1858. According to Coleman, many of the town’s earliest baseball matches were held in Bronson Park, that is until village president...

Baseball in Kalamazoo (1890-1920)

By the late 1800s, baseball had become America’s favorite pastime—perhaps the most widely played sport in the country—and it had changed considerably. No longer a casual game reserved for the country club elite, baseball had become a rough and...

Baseball in Kalamazoo (Since 1920)

Several rule changes were instituted in 1920, which brought an end to organized baseball’s dead-ball era. Scores were higher and there were more home runs, which made the games more exciting to watch.

Baseball in Kalamazoo: Black Teams

From as early as 1877 or before, Kalamazoo’s leading African American baseball players were forming independent teams and successfully squaring off against other local and regional clubs, both white and black...

Flinch Card Company

“The Acme of Parlor Games,” “More Simple Than Authors,” “More Scientific Than Whist.” Sound like fun? For the millions of Americans who have purchased it since 1902, Flinch has provided limitless hours of strategy and entertainment. The history of...

Foot Ball in Kalamazoo (1870-1939)

During the 1870s, a local farmer named James Taylor hosted a fall event he called the Annual Harvest Home Festival “Bou-Yah!” in what was known then as Taylor’s Grove, the orchards on the west side of Kalamazoo where Frank Henderson later built...

Ganzel Brothers: Baseball Legends

Long before the Kalamazoo Growlers, before the Kalamazoo Kings or the Kalamazoo Kodiaks, even before the infamous Kalamazoo Lassies, or crack local teams sponsored by Checker Motors, Gibson, Shakespeare, and the Sutherland Paper Company...

Kalamazoo Lassies

In the early years of the 1950’s baseball was booming in Kalamazoo. On any given summer night, teams from local businesses, groups of school kids, or professional barnstorming teams would be swinging their bats and hoping for home runs at parks...

Little League

Little League Baseball was founded by Carl Stotz in Williamsport, Pennsylvania in 1939.  He wanted to create an opportunity for young boys to play organized baseball at little or no cost to their families.  This was achieved through the gracious...

National Driving Park

During the second half of the nineteenth century, Kalamazoo was, especially considering its small size, a hotbed for all things equine. As a result of this passionate interest and the generous contributions of a few wealthy backers, a famous...

Peter the Great: Champion Trotting Horse

“If Kalamazoo had never held a horse race, had there never been a trotting track here, the name of Kalamazoo would still never be forgotten by horsemen. That is due to three men, and one horse. The men were Samuel A. Browne, Daniel D. Streeter and...

Red Arrow Golf Course

The municipal-run Red Arrow Golf Course (1041 King Highway) was built along the Kalamazoo River in 1937. Its construction represents one of several notable Works Progress Administration-funded projects developed with…

USTA Boys Tennis Tournament

August 2022 will mark the 80th year that Kalamazoo plays host city to the United States Tennis Association’s National Championship for 16-18 year-old boys. The tournament is staged over ten…

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