Hannibal City Council looks at possible events for Clemens Field

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David Ruby asked permission to hold a wrestling and boxing event at Clemens Field which would be the first event to take place on the field in 10 years.

HANNIBAL, Mo. — David Ruby, a lifelong resident of Hannibal, hopes to bring some of his childhood back to Clemens Field this summer. 

Ruby went before Hannibal City Council Tuesday evening to ask permission to hold an all-day wrestling and boxing event on the field, proposing it take place sometime in July. 

Sharing his own memories of Clemens Field, Ruby recalled watching people enjoying the field, especially on the holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

“You would see football players out there playing football with their dads and their families, or softball games for the most part,” he said. 

In the summer, Ruby enjoyed the many events held at Clemens Field.

“Wrestling was one of them that they would take up and I enjoyed it thoroughly,” he said. “I would love to go down there and I would love to see those things.”

Ruby also plans to participate in the proposed event.

“I have coached a lot of these kids around here and they love to see their coach wallow,” he said. “I have one more left in me and I would like to really serve it up.”

Council members and Mayor Hark liked the idea of bringing activity back to Clemens Field. Hark commented with a smile that it would be nostalgic. 

They referred the question to Hannibal Parks and Recreation Director Andy Dorian, who was also present at the meeting. 

Dorian liked the idea of having the event at Clemens Field but he warned that the turf might not be a sustainable place to hold it. He explained that the last event, a concert that took place 10 years ago, left the field in need of $10,000 in repair. 

Since then the policy has been to not hold events at the field and if they allow one event there, it will open up for more events to take place. Dorian speculated that changing the policy to include a security deposit for use of the field could be an option. 

Dorian and Ruby made plans to meet privately and discuss what they could do.

In other business:

  • Deputy City Clerk Melissa Cogdal certified the results from the April 4 election. Fifth ward councilman Colin Welch and sixth ward councilman Jeffry Veach were reelected and sworn in by Mayor James Hark. Proposition R was approved, which establishes a $1.90 monthly fee for recycling services. Also approved was Proposition 1, implementing a 3 percent municipal sales tax on recreational marijuana products. 
  • The Council approved a three-year contract with Lemon Law Firm for Lemon to continue serving as city attorney, and Ethan Matchett will serve as city prosecutor. The approved contract includes a $90,000 annual payment plus $18,000 for secretaries and other costs, which will be billed monthly. The contract begins July 1 and will extend to June 30, 2026.
  • Street closures for Hannibal High School Graduation from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday May 25 were requested by Jake Greving and approved by council. Barricades will be at McMaster’s Ave. and Brookside Drive.

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