Archive for the ‘ Cubs and the Community ’ Category

Help the Cubs “Pink Out” the Bleachers for breast cancer awareness

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(Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty)

Celebrate Mother’s Day a little early this season by joining the Cubs and Advocate Health Care on Wednesday, May 8, for Chicago Cubs Charities’ first “Pink Out” in the Bleachers. Each fan attending the game in the Budweiser Bleachers will receive a “Pink Out” hat, which will be handed out at the gates by Cubs players’ and coaches’ wives, to celebrate survivors and promote breast cancer awareness.

Fans throughout the ballpark are also encouraged to wear pink that day. If your wardrobe is a little light on pink, the Cubs Store, located across from Wrigley Field at the corner of Clark and Addison streets, will display a “Pink Out” section with pink merchandise. Fans will notice other pink touches throughout the ballpark as well, such as a temporary pink ribbon on the outfield wall, pink hats worn by the grounds crew and more.

All fans in attendance on May 8 are encouraged to participate in the Chicago Cubs Charities 50/50 Raffle, as proceeds will benefit mammograms for under- and uninsured women through the Advocate Charitable Foundation.

The Cubs and Advocate will also honor breast cancer survivors during game ceremonies. The ceremonial first pitches will be thrown by a breast cancer survivor, as well as Major League Baseball’s 2013 Honorary Bat Girl Contest winner, who was selected after submitting a story about “Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer;” the National Anthem will be sung by 40 members of the Sing to Live Community Chorus, which is comprised of singers whose lives have been touched by breast cancer; and three breast cancer survivors will lead the afternoon’s seventh-inning stretch from the broadcast booth. In addition, Advocate will bring more than 50 survivors to enjoy the game in the stands.

Fans can purchase tickets and find more information at www.cubs.com/pink.

Share your story of Cubs commitment

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(Photo by Stephen Green)

When you saw the Cubs’ new “Committed” marketing campaign, did you think, “They should be talking about me?” Now’s your chance to tell your story.

The Chicago Cubs and Schafer Condon Carter (SCC) are inviting fans to share their personal tales of commitment in the “Everyone Has A Story” online campaign. Fans can upload their stories in video format or as a photo and essay pairing at www.cubs.com/story, and submissions will be featured in a season-long online gallery.

“Chicago Cubs fans are some of the most passionate fans in all of sports, and we hear their amazing stories every day,” said Alison Miller, senior director of marketing for the Cubs. “This campaign allows these fans to share their stories with each other and be recognized by the team for their unrivaled commitment.”

The “Committed” campaign, which launched in early March, features advertisements that tell authentic stories from true Cubs fans, including Jeff and Jessi Galbraith, a couple from Indianapolis who got engaged at Wrigley Field; Adam Weiler of Chicago, who triumphed over his wife’s efforts to raise their son as a Brewers fan; Rob Mansfield, Rick Urena and Ben Winge, three best friends who love starting chants and claim they have single-handedly helped the team win a game; and David Eagan, a South Side security guard who proudly sports a tattoo of a Cubs logo and Ron Santo’s signature on the back of his head.

Now Playing: Bricks and Ivy Ball video

Last month, the Cubs and Chicago Cubs Charities held their annual Bricks and Ivy Ball at Navy Pier’s Grand Ballroom. Now in its third year, the event has become one of the key fundraisers for Chicago Cubs Charities. It helps support numerous organizations and programs targeting youth sports access and improvements in health, fitness and education for those at risk.

More than 840 guests helped raise $1.2 million at the Ball to benefit Chicago Cubs Charities, thanks to the generosity of Cubs owners, managers, players, front office associates and fans. As the program began, Chairman Tom Ricketts addressed the Cubs’ commitment to supporting Chicago’s children through community outreach and charitable programming.

“Our goal is to make life better for the youth and families of Chicago by doing our part to improve health, fitness and educational opportunities for those at risk,” Ricketts said. “Whether it’s a hospital visit, holiday toy drive, serving lunch at a USO or Thanksgiving dinner to homeless teens, our team is there donating their time and resources.”

During the evening, Chicago Cubs Charities introduced a video featuring some All-Star youth who have benefited from grants, including Cubs Care grants, a McCormick Foundation Fund. The video also featured Cubs players Darwin Barney, David DeJesus, Anthony Rizzo and Jeff Samardzija.

If you didn’t get a chance to attend the Bricks and Ivy Ball, you can check out the video here. Special thanks to the charities, Cubs players and Len Kasper for helping make this possible.

Cubs Summer Camps return to Chicago

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With summer just around the corner, registration for Cubs Summer Camps is now open to boys and girls ages 5-13. Beginning the week of June 24, there will be six one-week sessions running through the week of August 5 in Lake Forest, Riverside, Palatine, Niles, Naperville and Evanston.

“We offer a first class instructional experience to all our campers based on leadership and character development,” said Brendan Sullivan, director of Cubs Summer Camps. “The combination of on-field skill work coupled with the exclusive access we offer to the team make this a great experience for all that attend.”

In addition to on-field skill development and professional instruction, campers also have the opportunity to take a guided tour of Wrigley Field and either meet with a member of the 2013 Chicago Cubs or take an individual photo in the team clubhouse, depending on the schedule.

For the first time ever, Cubs Summer Camps will utilize video footage and analysis with older campers to further develop the ballplayers’ fundamental skills. The camps will also feature innovative instructional curriculum and differentiated practice based on each player’s age and skill level.

For more information, including Cubs Summer Camps enrollment forms, please visit the summer camp section online at cubs.com.

Cubs ready for renovation

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Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts talks to the media Monday. (Photo by Vine Line)

The Cubs and the city of Chicago reached an agreement on a renovation plan for Wrigley Field Sunday night which will give the historic landmark and the surrounding area a $500 million facelift. The plan calls for all the money to come from the baseball organization, with no public dollars needed. After unveiling the Cubs’ proposed alterations early Monday, Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts spoke to the media on the concourse level of the stadium.

“This massive investment will help us generate the resources we need for our baseball operation to develop championship-caliber players,” Ricketts said. “If this plan is approved, we will win the World Series for our fans and our city.”

Ricketts estimated that the renovation will add 1,300 permanent jobs to the area. Much of the Q&A session was spent discussing two major topics: the proposed digital scoreboard and the leniency towards more night games.

The proposal calls for 40 night games, 10 more than the current 30 games. Should MLB or its national television contracts require them to play more than five home night games, it will not count towards the total. While there will be no proposed Saturday or Sunday games (except for national TV games), they hope to get upwards to six 3:05 Friday start times. Wrigley Field will also host up to four concerts a year.

The Cubs also proposed a 6,000 square foot digital scoreboard to be placed in left field.

“We spent a lot of time talking to our fans, about how they feel about a video board at the park,” Ricketts said. “…I like Wrigley Field, I’m very traditional, but the fact is that when you look at what the fans are asking for, to improve their game day experience, and you add to that the economic value of a video board, it becomes obvious that it’s the best step for us.”

In addition, an advertisement similar to the Toyota sign will be constructed in right field. Ricketts said he is trying to be considerate of the nearby rooftop owners and will even cantilever the scoreboard over the street to minimize blocked views.

The renovations will take an estimated five offseasons to complete. The deal is still pending final community and city approval. Other highlights to the proposal include plans to add 1,000 free remote parking spots, new public safety and traffic management plans, closing of Waveland Avenue from Sheffield to Clark before, during and after games, constructing a new two-story Captain Morgan Club for an additional merchandise store and more space in the visitors’ clubhouse, more flexible space in the left and right field corners as well as a hotel next to the stadium.

Cubs to honor Jackie Robinson

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(Photo by Stephen Green)

As the Jackie Robinson biopic 42: The True Story of An American Legend is released in theaters nationwide Friday, the Chicago Cubs announced they will honor the 66th anniversary of Robinson breaking baseball’s color barrier on Tuesday, April 16. This historic moment is celebrated league-wide each year on April 15, with all uniformed personnel wearing Robinson’s retired no. 42 in honor of the legendary Hall of Famer.

“We’re happy to join all of Major League Baseball on this historic occasion,” said Tom Ricketts, chairman of the Chicago Cubs. “Jackie Robinson is a true American hero, and we are all greatly indebted to his contribution to not only baseball, but to American history and culture.”

Since the Cubs’ home series against the Texas Rangers begins on April 16, the Cubs will honor Robinson during a pregame ceremony, and players on both teams will wear No. 42. Nearly 50 “42” flags will adorn the roof of Wrigley Field during the series.

In addition, the Chicago Cubs will host more than 300 Chicago Public School (CPS) high school baseball players to attend Tuesday night’s game in recognition of the celebration. Several CPS baseball players will be recognized during the pregame ceremony.

As part of the pregame ceremony, Hall of Famers Ernie Banks and Billy Williams will both be recognized. Banks shares a special kinship with Robinson as the first African-American to play for the Cubs. Banks considered Robinson a mentor during their time in the majors.

Billy Williams broke into the majors not long after Robinson and Banks, and credits Robinson with being the pioneer who opened the door for all baseball players of color. Williams will share his comments about Robinson and his own personal experience playing in the Robinson-era during the game telecast on Comcast SportsNet.

Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., who gave the eulogy at Robinson’s funeral services in Brooklyn, N.Y., and actor John C. McGinley will throw out the first pitches t the game. McGinley, who stars as Brooklyn play-by-play announcer Red Barber in the movie, will also serve as the guest conductor for the 7th-inning stretch.

Following the game, Cubs Authentics will auction a game worn No. 42 jersey signed by all the Cubs players and a flag from the roof of Wrigley Field, with proceeds going to Chicago Cubs Charities.

Have a drink with David DeJesus and Anthony Rizzo

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(Photo by Stephen Green)

If you’re in the Phoenix area this week for Spring Training, join Cubs outfielder David DeJesus, first baseman Anthony Rizzo and other big league ballplayers for a drink—for a good cause, of course.

The David DeJesus Family Foundation will be hosting a Celebrity Bartending Night on Wednesday, March 20, at the American Junkie Bar in Scottsdale, Ariz., to benefit families in need. Featured celebrity bartenders include Darwin Barney, Anthony Rizzo, Travis Wood, Adam Eaton, Javy Guerra, David Hernandez, Casey Kelly, George Kontos and Wade Miley.

The event goes from 9-11 p.m., and general admission tickets are available for purchase at the door for $50 per person. VIP tickets are $150 and include a preparty cocktail hour from 8- 9 p.m. with food and a private mix-and-mingle as the players learn how to bartend.

“We are excited to raise funds to support our mission from this fun event,” said DeJesus. “My wife, Kim, and I started the David DeJesus Family Foundation and are excited to be continuing its growth here in Arizona.”

The event is being hosted in conjunction with Issues Concerning Athletes and MiCamp Merchant Services. American Junkie Bar is located at 4363 N. 75th St., in Scottsdale, Ariz.

The David DeJesus Family Foundation was created by Cubs outfielder David DeJesus and his wife, Kim, in order to help families in crisis in Chicago and in parts of the world where people lack basic human needs.  DDFF is committed to helping alleviate suffering for those that face devastation due to illness, poverty or disaster as well as those who seek a voice to be heard. In particular, DDFF has been actively involved in the fight against ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Kick off the season with the 8th Annual Race to Wrigley 5K

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(Photo by Stephen Green)

Ever dream of running through Wrigley Field like your favorite Cubs players? All you need to do is sign up for Chicago Cubs Charities’ 8th Annual Race to Wrigley 5k Run, presented by Athletico Physical Therapy.

The Race to Wrigley, which will take place on Saturday, May 11, starts and finishes at Wrigley Field and helps kick off the baseball season the right way. The course winds through the streets of the Lakeview neighborhood before returning to the Friendly Confines, where runners get a chance to run through Wrigley Field’s ground-level concourse, finishing under the famous marquee at Clark and Addison.

But the Race to Wrigley is about more than just fitness. It also offers runners an opportunity to show their support for a good cause. This year, personal fundraising proceeds will benefit Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, formerly known as Children’s Memorial Hospital.

After you sign up for the race, you can create your own personalized fundraising page. Or if you’re not interested in lacing up your running shoes but still want to help, you can become a virtual runner on the race’s website. Runners and virtual runners who raise $1,000 or more become Race MVPs. These lucky competitors get to run a victory lap around the Wrigley Field warning track and see their name in lights on the scoreboard.

Participants can register for the race at www.racetowrigley.com. Registration is $40 for a chip-timed run or $35 for a fun run. The chip-timed price will increase to $45 and the fun run price to $40 starting April 12. The chip-timed run begins at 8 a.m., and the fun run begins at 8:10 a.m.

The 2013 Race to Wrigley will be capped at 10,000 total runners. Registration will be closed once this capacity is reached or after May 9.

Cubs and Northwestern are bringing football back to Wrigley

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(Photo by Stephen Green)

The Chicago Cubs and Northwestern University Athletics announced a historic partnership on Tuesday that will bring football back to Wrigley Field for the first time since Northwestern and Illinois squared off in 2010. The multiyear, innovative event and reciprocal marketing partnership will showcase a wide range of Wildcats athletic programs—including baseball, lacrosse and five Northwestern football games—at historic Wrigley Field in the coming years.

“We are thrilled to partner with a professional sports franchise as iconic as the Chicago Cubs in an agreement that truly is the first of its kind,” said Jim Phillips, Northwestern University vice president for athletics and recreation. “As Chicago’s Big Ten team, this is a natural fit that will create tremendous opportunities for our student-athletes, our coaches and our fans in the area.”

As part of the partnership, the Friendly Confines will potentially serve as a home venue for many of Northwestern’s 19 varsity programs over the coming years. Two sports programs have set tentative dates to kick off the partnership. On April 20, Northwestern baseball will host the Michigan Wolverines in a Big Ten matchup. In spring 2014, the Wildcats’ women’s lacrosse team, winner of seven of the last eight NCAA championships under head coach Kelly Amonte Hiller, plans to host regional rival Notre Dame.

According to Cubs President of Business Operations Crane Kenney, all profits from these events will go back into the Cubs baseball operations. The dates of the five football games are yet to be determined, as Big Ten schedules are being reworked due to the additions of Maryland and Rutgers. The restoration of Wrigley Field is also a factor.

“To do this on a consistent basis, we have to have a renovation of the park so that the field fits the right way,” said Cubs owner Tom Ricketts. “But we’ve anticipated that in our designs, and we look forward to making sure we get the right renovations in so we can hold a [football] game every year.”

Now Playing: Cubs Caravan On the Move

On Jan. 16 and 17, the Chicago Cubs On the Move 2013 Caravan Tour delivered Cubs baseball to deserving individuals and organizations throughout the Chicago area and northwest Indiana. The annual tour featured two busloads of players, coaches and front office personnel visiting more than 15 locations.

The Cubs Caravan highlights the importance of reading, education and fitness to students at schools and libraries; drops in on patients in hospitals to brighten their days; and visits military personnel to show appreciation to those serving our country. This year’s theme, Cubs on the Move, reflects the Cubs’ and Chicago Cubs Charities’ focus on health, fitness and education for at risk individuals.

The 2013 tour visited six schools, four hospitals and the Chicago Public Library (Merlo branch). New stops included the 2nd Battalion, 24th Marine base, where Cubs players, coaches and front office staff served lunch to active duty military and veterans in partnership with the USO.

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