Sunday, April 23, 2006

“Eastment Heads Protesting Group” NY Times 02/23/60

That is no typo. This article from 1960 shows how the Yankees are not and were not the warm, fuzzy romantic all-American image of baseball. Let's face it, baseball is organized sports; it's a business. It's all about the GREEN, money. Our centralized Macombs Dam and John Mullaly Park held world-class and neighborhood sports events since its conception. The NY Times index is full with articles about sports events in Macombs. Even this 1960 article reveals how important the park is to our children and city residents. Some things never change -- until we were sold-out by our Bronx council members and borough president.

Eastment Heads Protesting Group” NY Times Feb 23, 1960

Macombs Dam Park Needed by City for Recreation, Manhattan Coach Says

By Joseph M. Sheehan

Strenuous objections were filed yesterday against proposals that Macombs Dam Park br converted to use as an auxiliary parking area for Yankee Stadium.

George Eastment, the track coach at Manhattan College and a member of the coaching staff for the 1960 United States Olympic team, presented the protest as spokesman of the Metropolitan track Coaches Association.

“I don’t think a problem of private enterprise should be solved by depriving youngsters of an opportunity for recreation,” said Eastment at the weekly track writers luncheon at Leone’s Restaurant.

Track Heavily Used

Probably no track in the United States is used as heavily as Macombs Park. It’s a fair estimate that on any given day during the training season 2,000 grammar and high school, college and club athletes work out there.

“In addition, the park facilities are used extensively for baseball, softball, football and soccer by schools, clubs, industrial leagues and such organizations as the Little League, Babe Ruth League, Police Athletic League and Catholic Youth Organization.

By reason of location, it’s the most convenient all-round sport facility in the city. Even if substitute facilities were provided, losing Macombs Dam Park would put a lot of deserving young people to extra trouble and added travel expense.

“The Metropolitan Track Coaches Association is drafting a letter to Mayor Wagner and Robert Moses emphasizing these points and putting our opposition on the record.”

The New York Yankees, concerned over the lack of parking space in the vicinity of their 67,000-seat ballpark, had proposed to city authorities that Macombs Dam Park, which is adjacent to the Stadium be made available as a parking area.

Officials of the ball club have argued that, as an established organization, the Yankees deserved at least that much consideration in view of the endorsement by municipal officials of the plan to build at public expense a $20,000,000 stadium in Flushing Meadow for New York’s proposed Continental League baseball team.


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