PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The replica Liberty Bell that stood atop Veterans Stadium is back and was installed Thursday at the Phillies’ ballpark.
The bell is back, but where’s it been?
The Liberty Bell that was high above center field atop the Veterans Stadium catwalk was taken down just before the Vet was imploded 15 years ago.
It wound up in storage in a service lot across from Citizens Bank Park.
On this date 15 years ago, Veterans Stadium was imploded. #TBT
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) March 21, 2019
Then a few years later a food distributor across the lot with a bell for its company logo acquired it somehow, and that’s where it remained for years, says Phillies director of Marketing Services and Events James Trout.
“I was kind of wondering what happened to it, and just happened to Google an article and talking to some others and learned that it was over at the C. W. Dunnet company and we thought, well, we’d like to bring it back here to the ballpark,” Trout explained.
He says in 2017 the company gave the bell back to the Phillies, but the team wasn’t sure they wanted it.
“It was sitting outside for pretty much all of that time,” he said. “So it was very weathered, rusted. When we first saw it we all kind of looked at each other, like, ‘Is this really worthwhile? Are we going to be able to refurbish it?’”
— Mike DeNardo (@_MikeDeNardo) March 22, 2019
They did, and the bell has 308 new light bulbs and a fresh neon strip.
It’s now in a great selfie spot, outside the new Pass and Stow bar, near the Third Base Gate.