As the majority of my readers are already part of the “ballhawking community” and frequent MyGameBalls, this will not be considered new news. However, those who are not familiar, let me give you a quick run-down and then details regarding the news in the title.
Every year since 2011, a group of ballhawks (no matter the skill) come together at a single game to form “BallhawkFest”. Since there is a high concentration of people AND stadiums, the east coast has held the official “Ballhawking All-Star Game” every year.
Some folks, like myself, who are based somewhere not found in the original 13 colonies, get pretty bummed about missing it every year. The demand for it to be located *insert new stadium here* has been overwhelming and the effort that goes towards planning must be a burden. So this year (MGB’s webmaster) Alan has come up with an Olympic-like system to take submissions from numerous locations and then decide where it will be held in 2016.
While I am confident in Minnesota’s bid, I also do not want to have it all be for naught. That is why I am proposing this bid for both the official BhF and as an unofficial BhF. If Target Field wins, great. If we lose out, dang, at least we’ll still be having everything that makes a BallhawkFest.
(Alan: Please know that this is NOT in anyway my attempt at forcing Target Field to be 2016’s official Fest home. I have found the whole proposal stage rather fun and I just don’t want it to be for nothing. Either way, I just want to have a fun experience for the MN/Midwest folks that share my love of baseball.)
Stadium: Target Field
Date: Saturday, July 30, 2016
Activities: Home Run Derby, Lunch, Twins Game
Home Run Derby: Parade Stadium (400 Kenwood Parkway, Minneapolis, MN 55403) (conditional based on permit)
Late Lunch/Early Dinner: Pizza Luce (119 N 4th St, Minneapolis, MN 55401)
Baseball Game: Target Field (1 Twins Way, Minneapolis, MN 55403)
Opponents: Twins vs. White Sox
Home Run Derby: 10/11 am (depends on the permit)
Lunch: 1 pm
Game: 6:10 pm (gates open at 4 pm, podcast recording starts about an hour before that)
Imagine a design like the Minnie and Paul logos below, but instead of Minnesota Twins, it would say “BallhawkFest”, and instead of “M” & “STP” there would be “20” & “16”.
Keeping up with tradition, the name and ball total will be on the back. I’d like to get baseball-style tees via a place like customink.com. The estimate for a shirt like this would be $25.
I have some feelers out there, but if you are living in the Minneapolis area or are a local company that would like to help us, please feel free to contact me (leave a comment or contact me via Twitter).
In addition to this blog, the podcast (At the Gates), and numerous other MN ballhawks’ Twitter and blogs, I have set up an account for BallhawkFest in general (from here going forward).
Follow BallhawkFest on Twitter and Instagram. This is not just for the MN campaign, but a way for whoever is in charge of the current year’s fest to give out info and celebrate their gathering. Once it is revealed who won the 2016 bid, the event coordinator will take over those accounts and be able to promote as necessary.
Why Target Field?
Last, but not least, in order to cover Alan’s criteria and give potential attendees a reason to show up, I’ll list a few reasons why you should come to Target Field on July 30th…
- The weather – July in MN is beautiful
- The locations – all three (Derby, Lunch, Game) are centrally located and easy to get to
- The Twins/Target Field
- Improved quality on the field
- Max attendance of 40,000 (though in it’s 7th season, attendance has plateaued around 30-35K on summer weekends)
- Legitimate ballhawk community (we have a core and are happy to help)
- Still a shiny, new stadium – maybe you haven’t been here yet, now you can cross it off the list!
- It’s not Citi Field or Yankee Stadium – I can think of a few places less ballhawk friendly, and one of them has already hosted a Fest
- Twins players – some of the most friendly in baseball
- White Sox are in town – not a bad group for BP
- Repeat: White Sox are in town – come on up, Chicagoans!
Thanks for listening to the pitch. I have a good core of people who are interested and who have said would attend. To those folks I say: Either way, it’s a go! Be ready to have some fun!
If you have any questions or want even more info or want to propose any additional things, comment below or contact me via any other desired avenue.