St. Augustine is rich in history and alive with culture. There is no shortage of things to do in America’s oldest town. And one of the biggest hubs for events, activities, and culture in St. Augustine is Francis Field. We’ve gathered some of the interesting facts and history surrounding the historic baseball field, as well as information about what’s happening today.
Francis Field has been a part of the community since the early 1930s. Though it has undergone many changes since then, it remains an important cultural center for the community of St. Augustine.
Francis Field gets its name from Frederick Francis, an athlete and co-owner of the amateur baseball team the St. Augustine Saints. The team, led by Frederick Francis, won the Northeast Florida Championship in 1933. The town mayor at the time declared September 11, 1934 as Fred Francis day to celebrate Francis’ numerous achievements in baseball.
During World War II, the field was used for military training. In fact, the Saints’ pitcher, Forrest “Lefty” Brewer, was one of five baseball players who were killed on the beaches of Normandy during the D-Day invasion. After the war, the Saints continued to play on the field until their last game in 1952.
Though the community referred to the field colloquially as Francis Field for decades, the field officially received the name only recently.
Modern Event Center and Cultural Hub
Today, the site hosts numerous cultural celebrations and festivals. Some of the most well-known festivals include the Celtic Heritage Festival in the spring and the Greek Festival in the fall. Regardless of when you’re visiting, there is always something happening at Francis Field! Throughout the year, there are countless art festivals, fairs, concerts, and cultural events taking place on Francis Field.
When not being used for festivals and concerts, Francis Field is a great place to take the family to spend a fun afternoon. Francis Field hosts the Project SWING Park, an interactive playground. The name stands for “St. Augustine’s Wish for It’s Next Generation.” The park boasts lovely shaded areas, an interactive playground for older kids, an interactive area for toddlers, a picnic area, and a shady pavilion perfect for hosting parties, get-togethers, and other gatherings.
While you’re visiting the lovely city of St. Augustine, be sure to check out the events calendar here and see what kinds of exciting events are taking place at Francis Field. In 2006 the city built a parking garage right next door, which makes access to this location super easy! During the most popular celebrations, like Rhythm and Ribs in April, the city provides shuttles from various locations around St. Augustine. To find shuttle locations for events, look here.
Contact information for Francis Field:
25 W Castillo Dr
St. Augustine, FL 32084
Phone: (904) 825-1040
Beacher’s Lodge is a quick and scenic 20 minute ride from Francis Field and Downtown St. Augustine. It’s the best of both worlds; stay at the beach and still enjoy being close to the downtown excitement!