Community

Park Perspectives: Dr. James S. Standard Park

Parents cheer on their Little League players as teams are introduced at the league’s Opening Day on April 12.  - Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell
Parents cheer on their Little League players as teams are introduced at the league’s Opening Day on April 12.
— image credit: Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

For nearly each day from mid-April through early July, Dr. James F. Standard Memorial Youth Athletic Park off of Silberhorn Road is bustling with youths, coaches and parents as the Sequim Little League practices and plays.

With the exception of a few maintenance checks or an occasional volunteer to mow the grass, the 10.5-acre park is undisturbed the remaining eight months out of the year.

In addition to providing a space for the Sequim Little League to play, Dr. James F. Standard Memorial Youth Athletic Park serves as a well-field for Sequim.

In the beginning

In September 1975 Maurice and Frances Sherk donated the land now known as Dr. James F. Standard Memorial Youth Athletic Park to the City of Sequim. However, according to Sequim City Council meeting notes, it wasn’t until 1982 that the park was officially named after Dr. James F. Standard.

Karen Postma, Standard’s niece, said she has fond memories of her uncle at his house in Seattle where he practiced medicine for 17 years before he moved to Sequim in 1962.

“My aunt and uncle had a big house in Queen Anne and I remember going to fun family gatherings there, especially around the holidays,” Postma said. “I also remember every so often he (Standard) would have to leave and go catch a baby.”

After his move to Sequim, Standard pursued ongoing volunteer services for Sequim athletes in all sports. He became a devoted supporter of youth athletic activities within the area for nearly 20 years. In recognition of Standard’s longtime community involvement, the park was fittingly named after him.

An odd location

“The park is in a bit of a gray area because the majority of the park is owned by the city, but it is located outside of city limits,” K.C. Eaton, Sequim Little League Major Boys Division Manager, said.

Given the park’s location and minimal use except from for Little League activities, it is almost entirely maintained by the Sequim Little League and volunteers.

“Whoever can help out, does,” Eaton said. “We just make it work so the kids can play ball.”

Sequim Little League does, however, own the parking area and Champion Field. In total, Dr. Standard Memorial Youth Athletic Park is home to Thatcher, Knapp, Murillo, Lotito and Champion fields as well as four T-ball fields.

The fields were named to acknowledge the volunteers who worked during the late 1970s to create the fields and essentially shape the use of the park, Eaton explained.

 

 

Reach Alana Linderoth at alinderoth@sequimgazette.com.

 

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