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SO SOCAL: The Best...The Beautiful...And the Bizarre

Wish I Was Here

April 18, 1999|David Davis

Vic Pallos remembers his first time. "It was 1954, and we'd just gotten our television set--a black-and-white model," recalls the 53-year-old. "We went to watch the Los Angeles Angels play at Wrigley Field, and I was amazed at how beautiful it was because the game was in color. I had seen grass before, but this was the greenest grass I had ever seen."

Since 1983, Pallos has paid tribute to baseball's past by producing postcard sets of old ballparks. Pallos' beloved Angels (and their cross-town rivals, the Hollywood Stars) were two of the top teams in the Pacific Coast League, the vaunted minor league that extended from San Diego to Vancouver. When the Dodgers moved from Brooklyn in 1958, the Angels and the Stars relocated; Wrigley Field, built by chewing-gum mogul William Wrigley in 1925 at 42nd Street and Avalon Boulevard in L.A., was demolished soon after.

Pallos scours museums, libraries, historical societies and private collections to unearth classic black-and-white photos of the stadia--including the Stars' Gilmore Field (near Farmers Market), San Diego's Lane Field and Sacramento's Edmonds Field. Pallos' latest, "A Century of Ballparks," contains 30 photos of 18 ballparks in 14 cities. "You always remember the first ballpark your father took you to," says Pallos. "You can't recapture that experience."

The sets cost $10 to $15. Write to: 658 Arden Ave., Glendale, Calif. 91202.

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