Saint Cloud, Minnesota
I went to a youth soccer game in St Cloud, and was surprised to find the field behind a 20″ granite wall. The entrances were all gated with wrought iron, leaving the field looking like it was inside the grounds of an old prison.
In addition to the youth soccer fields, Selke Field is also home to the SCSU Husky softball team.
The land was donated to St Cloud State University in 1931, and it became home to the university’s football team. Construction was started on the 35,000 foot wall around the 17 acres in 1934, as a WPA program during the Great Depression. The pink granite is called “reformatory pink”, because it was quarried from inside the St Cloud prison. Five masons spent three years building the granite wall, block by block.
At its height, Selke Field held the football stadium, a baseball diamond, four softball fields, a dozen tennis courts, a cinder track, practice golf tee, an archery range and badminton.
After World War II, with the success of the GI Bill, housing was needed for the veterans attending SCSU. As many as 25 barracks were built at one end of the field to meet that need.