- Richard Smith
Harford Varsity Baseball Field – Harford Fighting Owls
Photos by Andrei Ojeda, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 2.86
Harford Varsity Baseball Field 401 Thomas Run Rd Bel Air, MD 21015
Harford Baseball Field website
Year Opened: 2014
The Fighting Owls of Bel Air
Harford Community College is located in Bel Air, MD, roughly in between Baltimore and the Delaware state line. They play in NJCAA Division I, the highest athletic level for 2-year colleges and are a part of the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference.
Having played on the fairly worn Thomas Run Park baseball field, Harford wanted to update its facilities. So in 2014 the college began an extensive remodel of the facility. The nearby APG Federal Credit Union Arena also opened in the last few years.
The Aberdeen Arsenal of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball played the 2000 season at Thomas Run Park. The Arsenal departed to make room for the Aberdeen IronBirds, the A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles owned by Cal Ripken, Jr.
The University of Delaware used the Harford Baseball Field for many home games while their home Bob Hannah Stadium was being remodeled in 2014. Delaware also usually plays against the University of Maryland at least once per season here at Harford Varsity Baseball Field, since it is located nearly halfway between the two schools.
Food & Beverage 1
There technically is no food offered at the Harford Varsity Baseball Field, but with the nearby Wawa convenience store a short walk down the paved path between fields, I count it as the field’s own concession stand. The food offerings vary from hoagies, soup, quesadillas, and hot dogs. And the prices are better than most concession stands.
The new grandstand is a very nice set of stands with seat backs that wrap from dugout to dugout. Those seats will be behind a netting. There are also older seating sections further down each line that is away from the netting. If you hate to watch a game through nets you may want to move over there, although you will not have seat backs.
The field is an artificial surface. This includes the infield, which is artificial turf painted brown. Some true baseball fans may hate that, but it is understandable that a community college may want to keep maintenance cost down by using such a surface.
There is not much else in terms of atmosphere as it is a JUCO level baseball game. The team does have a PA announcer and plays walkup music for players.
Harford Community College is in a suburban location and has plenty of free parking. The area is safe and has many restaurants nearby. Naughty Dogs is within walking distance and has a fun, cheap bar for pre and post-game refreshments, along with food such as pit beef. JD’s Smokehouse located across the street provides another option for food and drinks and some pretty good barbecue. If you are in the mood for Mexican, La Tolteca is located just a brief distance away and is a consistently good food place.
Travel into Bel Air and there are multiple chain and local options. Zen 16 Sushi Cafe and MaGerks Pub & Grill are some great options.
A quick drive in the other direction is Aberdeen. Olive Tree is a better version of a well-known Italian chain, while Mamie’s Cafe with Love is an old-school Baltimore-style restaurant that offers free desserts with all meals. Super Chicken Rico is another choice with which you can’t go wrong.
The attendees at most games are family members or other athletes. There may be a few local residents who attend the games. The fans are knowledgeable and friendly to visitors.
Harford is located just a few miles off of I-95, one of the largest highways in the northeast. But State Route 22 can be very crowded with commuters traveling between Aberdeen Proving Grounds (APG) and central Harford County. APG has become a very large Army base after the last round of federal base realignment and closure activities. So leave some extra time getting to the campus. There is plenty of free parking.
Towson University in Northeastern Maryland is a brand new extension campus of the well-established state university that recently opened across from the Harford campus.
Return on Investment 5
Games are free to attend so the return on investment is pretty high. The low cost of concessions at nearby Wawa also make the cost to watch a good level of baseball game pretty high.
The Harford Sports Complex also has two other softball fields, as well as a convertible field that can hold softball and/or baseball games. Harford Stadium, home to the school’s lacrosse and soccer teams is also located next door.
If you get a chance to peek into the nearby APG Federal Credit Union Arena it is worth a visit as this is quite an impressive facility for a junior college.
The newly designed Harford Baseball Field is an impressive facility that offers high-quality baseball for no cost to the fans. Nothing fancy, but it makes a good stop for baseball fans.