Historic Muzzy Field, given to the city in 1912 by Bristol Parks Commissioner Adrian Muzzy in memory of his two sons, is where legends both past and present have played including Babe Ruth and Jim Rice. Since the first game was played in 1914, the ballpark has entertained various events through its century-plus of use: high school football and soccer games, home of the New Departure baseball team, neighborhood picnics, and Big East and American Legion baseball tournaments just to name a few. The Bristol Owls called Muzzy Field home and played in the short-lived Colonial League in 1949 and for a part of the following year before the circuit folded. The Bristol Red Sox, a Triple A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox organization, with Muzzy Field as their home base between 1973 and1982. Among those playing for the Bristol Red Sox were future Hall of Famers Wade Boggs and Jimmy Rice, as well as a future American League Rookie of the Year, Fred Lynn.
Today Muzzy Field is home of the Bristol Blues collegiate baseball team – a member of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League (FCBL), a wood bat league with a 56-game regular season – with the season running from the end of May through the beginning of August. The ballpark, which is adjacent to the City’s Rockwell Park, has a capacity of 4,900 people.
Many hands make for a great summer baseball experience!
It takes many people working behind the scenes to bring baseball to Muzzy Field to create a great summer experience – from working the concessions, to event planning, to social media and marketing planning, to the host families who open their homes to the players.
Local college students spend consecutive summers working behind the scenes at Muzzy Field. Emily Belanger, Kaylie Masi, Cynthia Fendt, and Victoria Kilbourne are only a few of the many who have enjoyed working for the Bristol Blues and have returned once again this summer. Stocking the concession areas with enough food and drink for each game starts well before the first pitch to ensure that attendees will be able to enjoy the tasty treats while watching the game.
Each season, the Bristol Blues players arrive in Bristol from their hometowns around the country. The Host Family Program has helped the young men who make up the team to be able to play baseball in Bristol for the summer by providing them with a welcoming home. From the end of May through the beginning of August, these ball players will continue to hone their baseball skills playing 56 regular season games in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League working toward their goal of a professional baseball career. The Bristol Blues rely on the generosity and support of quite a few host families and are very grateful to this year’s families for opening up their homes to the team.
Throughout the history of baseball, Host Family Programs have been a vital part of the success for nearly every team, both on and off the field. For many host families, their player becomes more than a guest – they become part of the family. In doing so, it allows these young men to stay grounded and comfortable in an unfamiliar city. If you think your family may be a good fit to be a Host Family and you want to experience memories that last a lifetime, visit the Bristol Blues website to find out more information about becoming a host family.
To show your support for Bristol’s home team, you can purchase merchandise at the Bristol Blues Store at 357 North Main Street, or order online at bristolbluesstore.com
To read about the players for the 2019 team roster and for a listing of home game dates, visit the Bristol Blues website so you can experience summer’s great past time right here in the All Heart City!