For one day only, 14 vintage base ball clubs will travel to Portage to participate in the inaugural Portage Vintage Base Ball Festival. This event - comprising 12 clubs from Michigan, one from Indiana, and one from Illinois - will provide a full day of entertainment & education with three fields of 1860's base ball on display.
Attending clubs are listed below. Click on the team picture to be taken to their website or Facebook page for more information about that club.
Please consider making a donation to support the success of this event! Click here or follow the "Donate" button below to be taken to our secure PayPal campaign.
You can also support the event by purchasing a festival t-shirt (details below). Your support - via donation or shirt purchase - will help ensure both a successful day of base ball for our visiting clubs and an entertaining and educational day for our community members who join us at the fields!
In an effort to demonstrate the variety of ways vintage base ball is played in the Midwest, our three fields will be utilizing different rule sets from the Civil War era with minimal variations. Follow the links below to be taken to the full rules & interpretations for that particular year.
Field 1 - 1864 Rules: This field will feature the game EXACTLY the way the rules were written for 1864. No changes, adjustments, or restrictions.
Field 2 - 1867 Rules: Our 2nd field will feature games played by 1867 rules, which means fly balls in fair territory must be caught in the air to be an out. The only adjustment to these rules will be on the base paths - runners are allowed no secondary leads and will be allowed to steal a base only after the ball has made contact with an object (the ground, the catcher, etc).
Field 3 - 1860 Rules: Our 3rd field will go back to the early 1860's and will be very similar to what is played on Field 1. Adjustments on this field will also involve base running as no stealing will be allowed unless a pitched ball hits the ground more than once after being pitched.
The game of base ball saw numerous changes and adjustments in the rules as the game was growing and developing throughout the 1860's. The Vintage Base Ball Association has done significant work to understand and interpret the game as laid down in those rules.
To learn more about this research and to see the variety of rules & guides about the game in the 19th century, follow the link below to the "Rules and Customs" page on the VBBA website.
Aerial view of Ramona Park showing the layout of the three fields.