WHO WE ARE
The Foothills Major Baseball Association (FMBA) is the only competitive Men’s Baseball Association in Calgary, currently consisting of 11 teams. Our season typically runs from early May through early September and all games are played at Glen Hansen Park located just minutes from downtown, just southeast of the intersection of Deerfoot Trail and 32nd Ave NE. The FMBA is an open league and prospective new teams are encouraged to contact the league executive through the website to express interest in entering a new team. Likewise, current teams are always looking for talented players, and individuals interested in trying out are encouraged to attend the Annual FMBA Open Tryout in March, or try submitting their information through our Free Agent portal to see if any teams reach out to them directly.
In 1979, two junior baseball coaches in Calgary, Doc Cody and Ron McCartney, were playing and coaching out of what is now Foothills Stadium, with a few games at Glenmore Park as well. They petitioned the City of Calgary for a more permanent place to play and this was provided in 1978 in conjunction with the Optimist Club of Calgary at Optimist Park. The increasing pressure on City diamonds lead to a need for a separate facility for people over 18 years of age to play baseball. Back in those early days of the league there were three senior teams (the Cardinals, Caseys and Odeons) and three junior teams (the Spikes, Giants and Broncos). Those teams played their games out of Optimist Park for three or four years before it was finally decided that something needed to be done about the need for more playing space for men’s baseball in the City.
In true Calgary form, volunteers from around the community stepped forward and offered to construct a major league size field on city land. Jim Wilfley was the main sponsor and benefactor, while assistance from other sports enthusiasts such as Hank Bassen, Gem-Sod, Alberta Treasury Branch, Coca-Cola, Conmac, and others proved invaluable as well. The park was built to traditional ball park dimensions with wooden fences, bleacher style seating, and a press box. The project was started in the Fall of 1982 and finished in August of 1984. The entire facility was built with donated labour and funding from community members. The league opened the 1985 season debt-free with its own ball park thanks to the unbelievable generosity of its sponsors and volunteers. Ron McCartney was the first person to serve as league president before Glen Hansen took over in 1982. Many people have contributed their time and effort to keep the league running over the years, and we continue to operate as a self-funded and self-organized league with several volunteer board positions that are typically held by current or former players.
In 1991, the facility was partially destroyed by a fire set by vandals. The reconstruction work that followed changed the appearance of the park radically as all the wooden fences and structures were removed in favor of vandal-proof facilities. The present facility was reconstructed under the presidency of Ray Brisson with funds from the fire insurance and a generous grant from the Saddledome Foundation.
In 2019, the FMBA executive decided it was time for the long-time nameless “FMBA Diamond” to be given an official title. This coincided with long time league volunteer Glen Hansen’s 40th year with the FMBA, with the league donating an official plaque at the entrance to the park in his honor. Glen has served many roles in the league over the years, starting out as an umpire prior to being manager of the Calgary Cardinals, as well taking an active role on the league executive including four terms as league president.