Argument erupts over proposal for Tinker Field to be historic landmark

Orlando City Commissioners meeting discusses stadium, says they will vote at later date


ORLANDO, Fla. – A heated argument erupted during Monday's Orlando City Commissioners meeting when the panel was discussing whether to move forward on declaring Tinker Field as a historic landmark.

Commissioner Patty Sheehan protested the language of the proposal, which left out the stadium and seats from the historic designation.

The proposal only included the baseball diamond for official designation. It also kept the baseball area unusable because of its size.

The stadium sits in the city's Parramore neighborhood, which hasn't hosted its own team since 2000 and lost its left and right field to the neighboring Citrus Bowl renovation.

Still, some community members want to save the field, which was built in 1914 and hosted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1964.

"We have a responsibility, and we have to live up to our responsibility in this structure," said one resident

"We want to make sure our history is preserved," said another. "We want to make sure our voices are heard."

But the conversation turned heated when one of the residents, Lawanna Gelzer, got an earful from Commissioner Regina Hill.

"It is about community, it is about unity, and it's about getting along," Hill scolded Gelzer.

Gelzer took issue with the mayor about the way she was talked to.

"You're out of line most of the time," said Mayor Buddy Dyer.

"No, she was out of line," Gelzer said.

"She was not out of line," replied Dyer. "She is the elected voice of Parramore, not the self-proclaimed voice."

The measure was pulled for a vote from the agenda, and will be added at a later date.

Hill says she may take the issue to the people of Parramore for a town hall-style meeting.

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