Evan Kvasnicka was a standout in his north central Kansas community of Narka. Kvasnicka played baseball as a high school student in the 1940s. After World War II, he and his good friend Glenn Pelesky began playing baseball for the Narka town team.
Kvasnicka was passionate about the game. He played third base and later outfield, while Pelesky played left field. The Narka ball diamond was located on private property at the edge of town. Fans drove their cars up to the field to view the game.
The Narka team was made up of volunteers who usually played Sunday afternoons from May to October. On the rare occasions when they played a double-header, Narka hired a pitcher. The team traveled a 50-mile radius to play opponents from Concordia to Superior, Nebraska. Practice was held on Wednesday nights and finished in time for the free movie showing off the side of a building in town.
The players supplied their own gloves, but local sponsors provided the remaining equipment. The Narka uniform, in use in the mid- 1940s, was patterned after that of the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cerny Brothers Hardware Company of Narka donated the uniforms. A liquor storeowner from Nebraska bought matching red sweatshirts.
The townsfolk loved to watch Narka games. Pelesky recalled there was “a barber who closed his barbershop during the baseball games so he and everyone else could attend the game. The barber also kept statistics on a bulletin board in his shop.”
Kvasnicka died in 1983. His daughter recently donated the Narka baseball uniform to the Historical Society’s Kansas Museum of History.
Personal items such as Kvasnicka’s help to tell the story of Kansas athletes. Sometimes these items and photographs connect Kansans to world events.
Entry: Narka Baseball
Author: Kansas Historical Society
Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.
Date Created: January 2010
Date Modified: February 2016
The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.