Scandia park to be named for softball legend Erickson

Cliff Buchan
News Editor

Around Scandia, Wayne Erickson remains legendary for his prowess as a fastpitch hurler for the local fastpitch team 20 years after his death. Now the Erickson name will live on longer.

On Friday night, friends and family will gather at the Scandia lighted ball field for a 7:30 p.m. dedication ceremony that will officially re-name the field the Wayne Erickson Memorial Ball Park.

An old-timers fastpitch game will follow the dedication program. Jim Lindberg, Greg Benson and Doniver Ahlm, three of Erickson’s former teammates, will take part in the game.

Erickson was just 54 in April of 1992 when he lost a battle with lung cancer. He is best known for his exploits as a pitcher.

He was just 16 when he started pitching for the Scandia team during a career that would span more than 20 years. He pitched his first no-hitter at age 17 and in the early days played for Scandia and a team in Osceola, WI.

He was in his prime in the 1960s and helped lead Scandia to a number of Class A and Class AA state championships. In 1984 he was inducted into the Minnesota Softball Hall of Fame.

Friday’s program will pay special honor to the athlete who helped make Scandia a household name in many athletic conversations.

The public is invited to the dedication and the old-timers game to follow. Zach Boesel and the Scandia Boy Scouts will sell refreshments.

The dedication is made possible in part by the support of the men’s and women’s softball teams in Scandia, the Scandia-Marine Lions Club, Councilman Jim Schneider, Eagle Scout candidate Boesel, Don Peterson and the Scandia Parks and Recreation Board.