“When baseball is no longer fun, it’s no longer a game.” – Joe DiMaggio
Shaun Nugent grew up in Marcola, Oregon with two brothers and his parents. A generous 160 acres provided plenty of space to play and so they did! Building a backyard wiffleball field out of chicken wire and small tree trunks was a childhood dream.
“Dad threw us batting practice when he was around and we played the world series, one-on-one when it was just me and my younger brother, Tarik,” Shaun said. As they grew older and moved to town for high school, Shaun and Tarik talked about building another field someday, a dream field with dugouts and foul posts, a warning track and green, green grass!
Tragically, Tarik passed away at the young age of twenty and Shaun found himself often reminiscing about his childhood memories with his brother. When he acquired a beautiful investment property on the banks of the McKenzie River in 2006, he began longing to build that emerald green field.
“Before we even touched the main house, we re-created the wiffelball field from my childhood with some upgrades,” Shaun said laughing. “That was my first priority.” Three years later, when the backstop posts started rotting and his wife was pregnant with their first child, Shaun and some high school teammates and friends tore down the existing field and built what is today, Vida Yards.
For those who aren’t familiar, wiffelball is very similar to baseball, only the ball is hollow with holes to allow for airflow, almost creating a whistle as the ball flies through the air. The design of the ball allows the pitcher added flexibility to throw curve balls and risers. The bat is plastic and the combination of lightweight ball and plastic bat make for a gentler ball game, that’s just as fun as baseball.
The entire field was excavated six inches deep and lined with landscape fabric to prevent moles from destroying the field.Shaun had Lane Forest deliver loam and Lawn base to level out the ground and then lay new sod to complete the field.
Lane Forest also delivered small, red cinder rock edges and finishes the field, along with wall block. The project took about five months to complete.
“Lane Forest was great to work with on this project,” said Shaun, “I trust them and have worked with them for years. For these kinds of needs, I wouldn’t go to anyone else.”
The Oregon Cliff House (which is available to groups for private parties, off-sites, vacations, management meetings and more) features plenty of fun and games as well as relaxing and quiet spaces. “There is something here for everyone”, said Shaun, “and everywhere you look, it is beautiful.”
“This property is special for so many reasons, and has so much to offer but it’s here primarily so that people have a space that is fantastic to spend time together in a way that is fun, relaxing and memorable. The wiffleball field is something truly unique in the way that it brings people of all ages and skill levels together, and evokes memories of ones past while creating new ones at the same time. People that have never played, play… and I love that” Shaun said.
The Oregon Cliff House filmed by Winston Ross.
For more information about how you can book The Oregon Cliff House or to see the other spaces Shaun has perfected on this property (including a granite corn-hole game space, horseshoes, hot tub and more), visit VRBO.com, listing #425707, or go to theoregoncliffhouse.com. For more information about Lane Forest Products, delivery or sod, click here.