BILLINGS — Marcie Smith has been looking forward to Wednesday for almost a decade.
"Nine years," she said Tuesday. "And tomorrow is the big day. I'm so excited."
Smith and the rest of the Landon's Legacy Foundation will officially open Landon's Miracle Field, an all-inclusive baseball field at Poly Vista Park on Billings' West End. The field will be home to the newest chapter of the Miracle League, which gives anyone with physical or mental disabilities the ability to play. Right now, Montana's only Miracle League field is in Kalispell, 450 miles away.
Marcie's son, Landon Smith, passed away in 2013, and she started the foundation shortly after to honor his dream of playing the game he loved. It's been a long journey, but one Marcie says has paid off big time.
"I wouldn't come over and look at it for the longest time after they started building it because I wanted to get the full effect, but curiosity got the best of me," she said. "It has way exceeded my expectations."
The Billings Park and Rec Department was putting the finishing touches on the field Tuesday and will run the Miracle League. Organizers say it's going to be a special addition to Billings.
"It's an amazing facility," said Parks and Rec community outreach coordinator Paul Reinhardt. "It's something that we don't have anywhere near Billings and so it creates a lot of additional opportunities for people that don't necessarily have a lot of ability to recreate.
"I hope that people come out, enjoy the celebration, and really take it in."
The grand opening is set for 5 p.m. and is open to the public. It's slated to include live music, food trucks, ice cream, giveaways, a photo booth, a dunk tank, mascots and more.