A boost came when the Friends' goals were endorsed by the History Committee of Passaic County Vision 2020. This civic-minded movement, which invited planners to think and work together across town divisions, engaged many former Patersonians now living in the suburbs-all with vivid stadium memories. Thus inspired to bring our concerns to light, we formally announced ourselves on September 17, 2002, the 70th anniversary of the stadium's dedication. Besides declaring the Friends' intent to stay with this new "stadium movement" for the long haul, we publicly reached out to all concerned with the stadium's future. Our objective, then and now: to assure that this amazing historic site, so deeply associated with the nation's working-class and African-American sports and social history, gets the recognition and support it deserves.
Almost immediately the Schools stepped up. In October, 2002, before a large audience of cheering Paterson citizens at Kennedy High School, Supt. Dr. Edwin Duroy presented a master plan drawn up by a team of professional architects and engineers for adaptive reuse of the derelict stadium.
We have continued to encourage the Schools to see the Friends as an ally in bringing this dream to fruition. Our first major goal was to gain the protections of the State and National Registers of Historic Places, a status Hinchliffe Stadium achieved in the first months of 2004. In February, 2005, we had the euphoric satisfaction of seeing our research celebrated nationally and internationally on the website of the National Park Service: the featured registered historic site for African American history month!