Rickey Henderson's high school Alma mater Oakland Tech has decided to honor the most famous member of their 1976 graduating class. Oakland Tech's Carter Field, otherwise known as the "Field of Dreams," which was just built in 2008, will be renamed Rickey Henderson Field in a ceremony to be held on October 3rd at 10am. Thanks to Jim at TasteLikeDirt for the heads-up, as I missed this announcement while away on vacation.
Here's the official resolution from the Oakland School Board approving the name change. I really hope that they don't have to follow the resolution exactly as worded, as it would not be pretty if they actually named it "Ricky" Henderson Field. You'd think that after over 30 years they'd be able to spell his name right, and this is coming from a School Board no less!
Rickey and his mother will both be in attendance, as will Ken Korach, the radio voice of the Oakland A's. The full press release can be found here. The field was built on the former Carter Middle School playground, hence the initial Carter Field moniker.
I won't be able to attend the ceremony, but if anyone is local to the area, I'd love to see any pictures that you could send. The end of the press release also indicates that commemorative shirts and caps will be sold, and I'll be sure to keep everyone updated as soon as I can find out more.
For more pictures from Rickey's Senior yearbook, click here.
To add an interesting wrinkle to the story, and make things a little difficult for kids playing baseball in the area, there already is a Rickey Henderson Field in Oakland!
In 2006, the Oakland A's and the GoodTidings Foundation, renovated "Lucky A's Field" in the Arroyo Viejo Recreation Center in East Oakland, and renamed the baseball field "Rickey Henderson Field." Although no one is probably interested, here's the minutes from the 2006 Oakland Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee, during which the motion for the renaming was passed (it's on the bottom of page 3). It's amazing what you can find online!
Here's Rickey throwing out the first pitch at the field that was renamed in his honor, at the first of what will be two Rickey Henderson Field's in the City of Oakland (photo from SF Chronicle).