FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 09, 2018
Celebrating the birthdate of Walter O’Malley
Today, we remember Walter O’Malley, who was owner of the Dodgers from 1944-1979, on the 115th Anniversary of his October 9 birth in the Bronx, New York. O’Malley was named President of the Dodgers on October 26, 1950 and proceeded to oversee a first-class organization that won World Championships in 1955, 1959, 1963 and 1965, along with National League Pennants in 1952, 1953, 1955, 1956, 1959, 1963, 1965, 1966, 1974, 1977 and 1978.
He set the gold standard for baseball franchises of the 20th Century and was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in ceremonies held in Cooperstown, New York on Sunday, July 27, 2008.
O’Malley tried for an unprecedented 10 years to privately build a new domed stadium for the Dodgers at the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues in Brooklyn. Only after that was not feasible due to New York government officials, he looked for other options, which included Los Angeles.
O’Malley’s crowning achievement was building, privately financing and helping to design Dodger Stadium, which opened in Los Angeles on April 10, 1962. He also built, privately financed and was influential in the design of Holman Stadium, opened in 1953 at Dodgertown, Vero Beach, Florida. O’Malley invested in and modernized Dodgertown, which many baseball experts considered as the premier Spring Training site (the Dodgers trained there for 60 years).
O’Malley established a legacy for expanding Major League Baseball westward, bringing the Dodgers to Los Angeles for the 1958 season and making baseball truly national. At that time, no major league team played west of Kansas City. Since 1998, 10 major league teams, or one-third, now play west of Kansas City.
O’Malley also privately built at Dodgertown: a pitch-and-putt golf course in 1953-1954; the first public 9-hole golf course in Vero Beach, dedicated in 1966 near Holman Stadium; and a remarkable public 18-hole golf course, opened in 1971. In 1948, Dodgertown became the first fully-integrated Major League Baseball spring training site in the South, with its players, coaches, front office personnel and media all staying and dining on base.
For more information, please visit www.walteromalley.com
About Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida
“A Florida Heritage Landmark”
World-famous Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida is a multi-sport, 80-acre complex on Florida’s Treasure Coast managed by former Dodger owner Peter O’Malley in a partnership since 2012. O’Malley, whose family developed and expanded the site formerly known as “Dodgertown” for nearly 50 years, partnered with his sister Terry O’Malley Seidler and former Dodger star pitchers Chan Ho Park and Hideo Nomo.
On November 10, 2014, Historic Dodgertown was named a Florida Heritage Landmark for its unique historic significance extending beyond baseball, as the first completely integrated Spring Training site in the South. The “Baseball and Dodgertown” historical marker is located at the entrance to the conference center.
The home of Dodger Spring Trainings from 1948-2008, it was the starting place for six World Championships and 14 N.L. Pennant-winning teams. Numerous Baseball Hall of Fame players trained on these hallowed grounds, as well as 20 visits from professional teams in Asia.
The all-inclusive facility, owned by Indian River County, gives teams of all ages the unique opportunity to train, play, dine and stay together in on-site villas. Participants utilize one of 10 ½ playing fields (seven are Musco-lighted for night games), including a new cloverleaf of youth baseball/softball fields with concessions area and new multi-purpose field (110 by 130 yards) for football, soccer and lacrosse.
Other amenities include clubhouses, two full-sized weight rooms, dining room, Stadium Club lounge and a competition-size swimming pool. The home of 6,500-seat Holman Stadium, Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida provides an all-encompassing experience for guests and is the ideal setting to build a championship team. It’s the perfect location for tournaments, camps, schools, business conferences and seminars.
Continuing its tradition since 1983, the Los Angeles Dodgers Adult Baseball Camp returned to Historic Dodgertown in November, 2014. Visit historicdodgertown.com for more information.
Ruth Ruiz, Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida, (772) 257-8532