Field Of Dreams

Trustee, Alumnus & Captain of Bryant University’s 1967 Baseball Team, Bill Conaty exemplifies the notion of “leadership giving”

Coach W. Camper with co-captains T.DeQuattro & W.Conaty / Courtesy of Bryant University

Beyond the warm brick of the Elizabeth and Malcolm Chace Wellness and Athletic Center, past the Bryant University parking lots and the manicured lawns of Bulldog Stadium, Conaty Field beckons. What was once only a vision has turned into reality. The newly upgraded and refurbished baseball and softball complex waits in anticipation for the 2012 season to begin.

Thanks to the generous support of one man, Bryant University Trustee and alumnus Bill Conaty ’67, when the Bryant University baseball team opens its home schedule on March 20, Conaty Field’s true residents – 33 players wrapped in proud Black and Gold – will take the field in a completely renovated space.

No longer just a diamond set on a vast expanse of open land, Conaty Field is not a field at all. Now, it is a stadium. Already considered to be one of the top collegiate baseball settings around, its enhancements will be felt by more than just the student athletes who play on Bryant’s softball and baseball teams.

“We are so appreciative of Bill Conaty’s support of his alma mater in making this dream a reality,” said Director of Athletics Bill Smith. “The renovations to our baseball field enrich our facilities and our program, not only for our student-athletes and coaches, but for our fans as well, who will finally be able to enjoy the comforts of a stadium as they come out to enjoy another successful Division I baseball season this spring in Smithfield.”

Mother Nature cooperated with renovation efforts throughout the fall, as unseasonably warm weather allowed for construction to stay right on schedule. The renovations, which spill over next door to include a similar facelift to the softball complex, feature bleacher seating for 500, including 200 chair-back seats and a state-of-the-art sound system, as well as a new press box to amplify Bryant’s in-game operations, public address and video broadcasts.

Come March 20, Conaty Field with be teeming with life. Baseball and softball fans will fill the stadium with noise and support, bubblegum and popcorn – all the sounds and smells of America’s favorite pastime. The Bulldogs will take the field, and the crack of the bat will interrupt the air filled with the hints of spring.

But for now, Conaty Field waits. With all the bells and whistles that were once just a dream, it is ready for spring.

Fall / Winter 2001

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