Soft opening for Dallara field this week
Opening to community set for Wednesday
TRYON—The community is invited Wednesday to a soft opening for the Dallara Ballfield at Harmon Field.
The opening ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. at the field.
Most of the work on phase 1 of the field has been completed, with the field now playable.
The official opening of the completed project is scheduled for next spring, when the artwork and scoreboard will be installed.
The Harry Dallara Memorial Foundation was established to honor the life of Harry Anthony Joseph Dallara, who died in 2012. Dallara grew up in the Bronx and moved to Spartanburg after serving in World War II. In the 1950s, Dallara discovered Tryon and Harmon Field, where he spent many Sunday afternoons playing baseball with his family and friends.
He played his last game of baseball at Harmon Field at the age of 95, in the spring of 2012, just before his death.
The Dallara project at Harmon Field will include renovations to one of Harmon Field’s three baseball diamonds, including new fencing and gates, a new scoreboard and landscaping to create a park-like atmosphere. The project will also include a bronze statue of Dallara inspired by a photograph of Dallara hitting baseball at the age of 92. Tryon native sculptor William Behrends will create the statue. Behrends will also design a bas-relief sculpture to honor the Tryon All Stars, a semi-professional African-American baseball team formed in the 1940s. At that time, the Tryon All Stars, because of segregation, were not allowed to play at Harmon Field.
“We have made major progress in recent months in implementing many improvements to the Harry Dallara Ballfield at Harmon Field,” said Harry Dallara Foundation Chairman Charles Dallara. “Although the final additions to the ballfield, including unveiling of a statue of Harry Dallara and a bas-relief plaque of the Tryon All Stars will not be fully completed until early 202, we wanted to go ahead and welcome the youth of this area to enjoy the benefits of this major upgrade at Harmon Field.”
Dallara also said he wanted to emphasize that young boys and girls of all backgrounds are welcome to hone their skills at Harmon Field.
“We also would encourage Polk County recreational officials, as well as community organizations, to begin planning greater use of Harmon Field in coordination with the Harmon Field Board of Supervisors and their staff,” Charles Dallara said. “With the recent major renovations to the playground, the improvements envisaged for the basketball court and these enhancements at the Harry Dallara Ballfield, Harmon Field is becoming an even more attractive magnet for families from throughout the area. It is on the way to becoming one of the premier family recreational sites in the southeast.”
The Harry Dallara Foundation gifted $20,000 towards a new playground, which was installed earlier this year. A project to upgrade the open-air gym is also planned through fundraising.
Wednesday’s soft opening will include light refreshments following the ceremony, which will include Tryon Mayor Alan Peoples, Harmon Field Board of Supervisor Chairman Benny Smith and Harra Dallara Foundation officials as speakers.
For more information about the Dallara Project, people can visit harrydallarafoundation.org.