WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAU) -- The new grandstand at Wausau’s Athletic Park made it’s debut Friday night. Wisconsin Woodchucks owner Mark Macdonald says crews endured extreme weather over the winter and spring, but finished on time. He likes the way it turned out. “It turned out better than I anticipated. It’s much nicer than I expected it would be so I’m happy. Very, very happy.”
The new grandstand was the first and biggest phase of a multi-phase renovation plan for Athletic Park. Macdonald says there will not be any construction in the upcoming off season. “We want to take a year off and rest a little bit and figure out what we have right now. This is the biggest part of it. The other phases are going to be less of an impact on the facility, but, right now I think we’re going to rest this winter and relax a little bit because it was a lot of work for our small staff.”
One of the new features is a park with playground equipment where North 5th Street used to be. Macdonald says it is a wonderful entrance to Athletic Park and improves safety with the removal of the street traffic. Best of all, Macdonald says the children have more to do. “It gives the families that bring children here something else to do. The kids can’t sit still for nine innings. They get bored and they want to run, so this gives them someplace to run to.”
Most of the fans liked the new grandstand, but there were a few comments from fans that missed the old awning and wished for a little more shade.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters defeated the Woodchucks 8-4 in their home opener.