WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Play ball! The Wichita Wind Surge’s Opening Day is just hours away.
On Friday, hundreds of people will be making their way to Riverfront Stadium.
The grounds crew has been working on the field for weeks, waking up the grass, prepping the mound, painting logos, and so much more.
“Everybody can come in and be wow! That just looks really cool. How did they do that? Is that real?” said Ben Hartman, Head Groundskeeper for Riverfront Stadium.
As a baseball fan and graphic designer, Taylor Martin’s attention always goes beyond the game.
“If you watch Major League games, there is always a lot of interesting patterns and stuff mowed into the fields, and so like just being able to see that would be cool to actually get to have a design that was actually put on the field,” Martin said.
The Wind Surge gave Martin his chance. He entered their contest to design the Opening Day field and won.
“I was really excited for two reasons. One, I was like that is something we can do, and it actually won’t be that hard, and two, it just stood out,” Hartman said.
The design is covered in waves, symbolizing the Surge and Kansas’ rolling hills.
Hartman says it’s not as hard to create as you might think, “People try to overcomplicate it, and it’s really not that complicated. It’s just the direction of mowing, the light patterns I’m mowing away from you, dark I’m mowing towards you. If you go the other direction, you see a completely different pattern.”
Now Martin is excited to see his design come to life for all to see.
“Whenever I designed it, it was like a 4×4 inch jpeg on the screen, and so like to see it at this size for the whole ballpark is just amazing,” Martin said.
You can see the field yourself Friday for the season opener. The first pitch is at 7:05 p.m.
Hartman says they plan to give fans a new field design each homestand.