Wesson Opens New $2 Million Renovation at Jackie Robinson Stadium
Councilmember Herb Wesson was recently joined by over 2,000 community residents in celebrating the reopening of the new $2 million renovation at Jackie Robinson Stadium at the Rancho Cienega Sports Complex. The event preceded the Dorsey High School's first home football game.
The Jackie Robinson Stadium at Rancho Cienega Recreation and Sports Complex, an LA city facility, was built in 1973. In an area of Los Angeles that is very "park poor," the stadium and sports complex has been a vital and heavily utilized community asset. Dorsey High School plays its football games and holds its track meets at the stadium, and community residents use the track for exercise. However, over the past 36 years both the field and the track have fallen into considerable disrepair.
"When I was a candidate for the 10th District, I vowed to the people of this community to do something about the sad condition of the facility," said Wesson. "The community deserves something special, and this spectacular renovation is truly something special. "
Several prominent Dorsey football alumni returned to help inaugurate the field, including NFL great Keyshawn Johnson, and recent alumni, Rahim Moore and Johnathan Franklin, both now playing for UCLA. Also participating was Kathy Robinson Young, niece of the late Jackie Robinson, and several members of the Robinson family. Dorsey was represented by Principal George Bartleson, Coach Paul Knox, and Dorsey Boosters Club Director and Strength & Conditioning Coach Martin Ludlow. The Baldwin Hills Pop Warner Football teams made a special appearance as did Marguerite LaMotte of the Board of Education.
However, it was Councilmember Wesson who was praised for finding and pulling together the $2 million needed for the stadium renovations. Those renovations included replacing the track, which had been worn down from years of use, and installing a new state of the art artificial turf providing more flexibility and durability to replace the grass on the middle field of the stadium that was often torn-up. All together, there was much to celebrate.
"This is just the beginning," said Wesson. "Our plan is to ultimately transform the entire complex into a showcase for the entire city."