A Florida Heritage Landmark
Cheer in Historic Dodgertown, a multi-sport facility in Vero Beach, Florida where athletes of all ages and skill levels have the opportunity to train, play, and stay together. The facility which includes the historic Holman Stadium was originally created as a Navy housing base and was transformed into the home of Spring Training for the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team. So intrigued by the new facilities was Life magazine that it made Dodgertown the April 5, 1948 cover story and devoted four more pages inside. Another fun fact: Pope John Paul II celebrated Mass at Dodger Stadium on September 16, 1987. It has since evolved into a multi-sport destination that includes an option of room and board via their on-site villas.
In 2004, Historic Dodgertown is recognized by the state of Florida as a Florida Heritage Landmark. The efforts for this recognition are led by the Indian River Historic Society and a signage monument is installed at the walkway to the campus Conference Center.
A perfect multi-sport training ground
Historic Dodgertown can be configured for a wide variety of team sports, including baseball, softball, football, soccer, lacrosse, rugby, tennis, swimming and more.
Competition and practice fields are complemented by an abundance of dedicated areas for skills practice, allowing for specialty training and more time to hone individual and team skills. Historic Dodgertown has played host to NFL football teams for training camp and playoff preparations, Division I college football programs for bowl preparations, Women's Professional Soccer for pre-season training camp and numerous international baseball teams for spring training.
Isolated from the downtown Vero Beach area, Dodgertown enabled the players to be self-contained in the airport area and at the living quarters on base. The Dodgers built up the base so that a player would have all basic needs cared for, including their own postal station, canteen, barber shop, Western Union office and lounge.
Twist and turns
In December 2008, Indian River County officials, not sure what to do with Dodgertown without a team, decide to shutter the facility. But later in May2009, Minor League Baseball (MiLB) agrees to operate the site as "Vero Beach Sports Village".
It eventually reopened the property with teams, tournaments and umpire schools participating in year-round activities. Peter O'Malley, a former owner of the Dodgers saved Dodgertown from being shuttered for a second time in 2012 and has now positioned it to be one of the nation's premier multi-sport training sites and conference centers.