Years after arson, Tink Larson Field reopens in Waseca, Minn.

After being destroyed in an arson fire two years ago, Tink Larson Field in Waseca, Minnesota re-opened Saturday.

The $2 million rebuild was completed this summer thanks to donations from the Twins organization and various community members.

“It’s just a testimony to what we do when we’re faced with tragedy as a community,” said Waseca Mayor Roy Srp.

Dating back to 1939, the field is home to an amateur team and several high school teams.

While the field’s longtime caretaker and namesake, Tink Larson, is recovering from injuries sustained in a recent car crash, he made it out to the grand re-opening Saturday to give one of the new features its first test. 

“It’s bigger and it’s handicap accessible,” Srp boasted. “No one knew the first handicap person that would be going in would be Tink Larson in a wheelchair because of the accident he had, but it was accessible and he was able to get in.”

While no games will be played on the field this summer, the timing of the first game is quite symbolic. The first pitch will be thrown out three years to the date that the field burned down. 

And while the fire was heartbreaking, the city has gracefully turned tragedy into good.

“Actually, it’s better. It’s not as old, but it’s modern now and it’s better,” the mayor said.