Essig Ballpark

Photo from first night game: June 5, 2015

Essig Ballpark, located between New Ulm and Sleepy Eye in south-central Minnesota, is home to a number of Essig baseball and softball teams during the spring and summer.

In 1944, Louis (Jackpot) Holm and his wife, Sylvia, purchased a farm outside of Essig. This led the Holmes and another area farmer, Bernard Fleck, to set aside land for the purpose of starting the Essig baseball field. For the next twenty years, Jackpot became Mr. Baseball in Essig as he built up the game and park.

Jackpot recruited players, coached and managed teams, ordered supplies for the concession stand, painted the fences and found sponsors for the team. Sylvia worked equally as hard by cooking and cleaning in the concession stand and washing team uniforms.

Jackpot was also a constant spokesperson for Essig baseball and helped raise the necessary funds for the field, including the major fund raiser for the association, the Essig Baseball Bazaar. This became an annual social event for the community, held at the Essig Bar and Dance Hall.

As the years progressed, he and other leaders started youth baseball programs and in 1965 Jackpot helped organize a girl's softball team. Jackpot had many other jobs in baseball including: overseeing the Essig Baseball Association for twenty one years as its president, serving as secretary of the Tomahawk League, and helping organize the Bi-County league. In 1968, Jackpot was inducted into the Minnesota Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame for the time and efforts he put into the Essig baseball community.

By 1970, Jackpot stepped back from much of the hands-on operations of the baseball program as a new generation carried on the great tradition. Jackpot passed away in 1976. In March 1986, Sylvia sold the baseball field property to Milford Township for the explicit purpose of maintaining the baseball field for years to come.

Jackpot gave the youth of the community a tremendous gift; he gave them a place to experience their glory days.

In 2008, a new softball field was constructed to the south of the baseball field for additional playing space for Essig's teams.

2015 saw the addition of lights to the baseball field. After years of planning and fundraising, the Essig Bluejays hosted their first ever night baseball game on Friday, June 5.

Flyover Video from First Night Game - 6/5/15


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Page Updated: 6/9/2015