The Aberdeen IronBirds, Class A short-season affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, announced Wednesday, plans for installation of a new 1,500 square foot high-definition video board and live score line display at Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium.
Funded by Ripken Baseball, the new additions will be fully installed and operational in time for the IronBirds' 2017 home opener against the Hudson Valley Renegades on June 19, the IronBirds said in a news release.
"Our investment represents much more than just an improvement to the facility," IronBirds General Manager Matt Slatus said in a statement. "This project is a testament of our commitment to providing the ultimate, family-fun experience, as well as our dedication to the Harford County community. Our fans are going to love the upgrade and all that it brings."
Manufactured and installed by industry-leader Daktronics, the display will measure 30 feet high by 50 feet wide and feature a 15HD pixel layout for an enhanced viewing experience from all parts of the ballpark.
The new video board and line display will replace the original display that was installed prior to the IronBirds' inaugural season in 2002, which is also the year the stadium opened.
The IronBirds' will also utilize the new display by hosting a monthly, free Community Movie Night Series presented by Giant Food. Throughout the summer while the team is on the road, fans, families and the local community will be invited to enjoy movies from the outfield comforts of Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium.
The new video board is one of several improvements being planned for the stadium to both enhance fan experience and improve visitors safety and security.
All the railings in the stadium are being replaced by the City of Aberdeen, which owns the stadium, in a project that also includes repairing cracked concrete around where the railings are anchored.
The railing project has a contracted cost of $993,000 and should be completed in time for the IronBirds season opening, Aberdeen's Director of Public Works Kyle Torster, said Monday night. The new railings, which are cast aluminum, are replacing the stadium's original railings which are composite plastic and had experienced some cracking and warping, city officials said last summer.
The city and baseball team have also been working on a plan for dozens of other improvements and upgrades over the next few seasons.
The IronBirds' new 5-game "Best Ticket Plan Ever," featuring tickets to five sold out games, plus an exclusive IronBirds hat, are on-sale now, according to the team. For more information or to purchase the "Best Ticket Plan Ever," call an IronBirds representative at 410-297-9292 or visit www.IronBirdsBaseball.com.
Aegis staff members Randy McRoberts and Allan Vought contributed to this article.