Archive for the ‘ Experience Wrigley Field ’ Category

Cubs Charities announces Centennial Seats public art project on the Mag Mile

Ballpark-Seats

To commemorate Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday and the many historical moments that have taken place at the park over the last century, Cubs Charities is honoring the Friendly Confines with a momentous philanthropic effort. Beginning May 30, Chicago’s Michigan Avenue lined with 50 custom-made pairs of ballpark seats.

The 100 seats each depict a special moment in time at Wrigley Field. Cubs Charities partnered with 47 Chicago-based nonprofits, celebrities and artists to paint the Centennial Seats, and they will be hosting an online auction where participants can place bids to purchase the seats. All proceeds from the nonprofit-designed chairs will be split between Cubs Charities and the respective partnering organization.

“This has been such a special year as we celebrate Wrigley Field and what the park has meant to Chicago over the past century,” said Laura Ricketts, Board Chair of Cubs Charities. “Cubs fans are truly the greatest in baseball, so we can’t wait to honor them by giving back to the community with this special Centennial Seats program.”

From Vince Vaughn and the Chicago Blackhawks, to the National Museum of Mexican Art and South Chicago Art Center, each organization or person has painted a scene that pays tribute to a specific moment in Wrigley Field history. Some of the memories include: Ernie Banks’ major league debut, the scoreboard installation, Babe Ruth’s “called shot” and the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.

The Centennial Seats will be on display along North Michigan Avenue throughout the summer. Participants can place bids for these one-of-a-kind chairs from May 30 through Aug. 10. The auction will be held online at cubs.com/chairs.

To help raise awareness and promote the auction, Cubs Charities is calling for Chicagoans and Cubs fans to get out their phones and tweet, post and Instagram photos of themselves with the Centennial Seats. Using the hashtags #WrigleyField100 and #CentennialSeats, passers-by will be able join the philanthropic effort and spread the word that all proceeds benefit a great local nonprofit. Additionally, a map has been created that pinpoints exactly where each nonprofit, celebrity or artist’s respective seat is located, making it easy to navigate the Centennial display. The Magnificent Mile Association partnered with the Cubs to make this public art project possible.

Sponsored by Magellan Corporation, the Centennial Seats will be installed the evening of May 29 for their morning debut Friday, May 30.

“We like to get involved with charitable projects that give back to our community—and this is possibly the most colorful and exciting one yet,” said Michael Minkus of Magellan Corporation. “We can’t wait to see the Centennial Seats set up on Michigan Avenue to kick off this charitable effort.”

The full list of participating nonprofits in the Centennial Seats program, as well as other information about Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday celebration, will be available beginning this Thursday at wrigleyfield100.com.

From the Pages of Vine Line: Stretching Out with George Will

George-Will

(Photo by Stephen Green)

Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and author George Will is probably best known for his conservative political commentary. But the Champaign, Illinois, native is also a huge baseball fan who has written extensively on the game. His newest book, A Nice Little Place on the North Side, is a deeply personal look at the Chicago Cubs, the team he has rooted for since he was a boy, and their iconic home, Wrigley Field.

Vine Line: You’ve now done three books on baseball. What keeps you coming back to the game?

George Will: I really only write about politics to support my baseball habit. I was just thinking I’ve published 14 books now, three of them on baseball, and I’m sure those three will sell more than the others combined. Baseball is fun. It’s endlessly fascinating. It has such a long history, unlike every other American sport. It goes back well into the 19th century and beyond.

VL: You grew up downstate, so you had a choice between the Cardinals and Cubs. How did you become a Cubs fan?

GW: I’m not sure I remember how. The funny thing is I remember the Cardinals’ radio broadcaster annoyed me—some guy named Harry Caray, who left St. Louis, went to Oakland, went to the South Side of Chicago, and, of course, wound up being an iconic figure in Cubs history. What annoyed me when he was with the Cardinals was how much he supported the Cardinals. I didn’t mind him supporting the Cubs.

VL: From your book, I take it you’re a reluctant modernist. You like Wrigley Field the way it is, but you see the need for change.

GW: This ballpark is older than the Supreme Court Building, the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials, the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building, Mt. Rushmore, Hoover Dam, the Golden Gate Bridge—it’s old. And like a lot of old things and people, it needs maintenance. So, first of all, you have to spend on maintenance. Second, every major league team’s ballpark is a revenue producer, and it helps them put a better product on the field. And third, the Cubs need certain things like weight rooms and video rooms and batting cages they can use during games. The modern athlete demands more and deserves more.

VL: What compelled you to devote a book to Wrigley?

GW: I just wanted to know all the interesting things and, frankly, the fun things that have happened. Not many Cubs fans know that Jack Ruby, the guy who shot Lee Harvey Oswald after Oswald shot Kennedy, was a vendor in Wrigley Field. Not many people know that Ray Kroc, before he founded McDonald’s, was selling plastic cups to the vendors here to serve soft drinks in. Not many people really know the story, sad and glorious at the same time, of Hack Wilson, who has one of the records that has resisted breaking more than almost any other—191 RBI in one season. So it’s an enormous amount of history just concentrated in this one little spot on the North Side.

1000 Words: Mr. Cub meets the Captain

Jeter-Banks

Even the great ones need a few hitting tips every once in a while. With the Yankees in town on Tuesday, Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks, sat down with Yankees captain Derek Jeter for a unique Q&A that will appear in Vine Line and Yankees Magazine. Keep an eye out for the upcoming July issue to get the complete interview.

1930s Homestand Promotions and Guests: 5/16/14-5/21/14

Cubs Viewmaster
On May 18, the first 5,000 kids 13 and under will receive a Cubs Viewmaster.

The Cubs will host the following promotions and guests in honor of the 1930s decade at Wrigley Field. As always, several first pitch and seventh-inning stretch conductors will be tied to the history of Wrigley Field.

1930s Homestand Recap: May 16-21
Friday, May 16, Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers, 1:20 p.m.

  • Promotion: Babe Ruth’s “Called Shot” Bobblehead (first 10,000 fans)
  • First pitches: Babe Ruth’s daughter, Julia Ruth Stevens, musical group Haim
  • Seventh-inning stretch: Julia Ruth Stevens and her son, Tom Stevens
  • Broadcast: WGN-TV, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com
  • Postgame Event: Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation’s Cook-Off for Cancer

Saturday, May 17, Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers, 1:20 p.m.

  • Promotion: Cubs Umbrella presented by Morton Salt (first 10,000 fans)
  • First pitches: Morton Salt Girl, members of the U.S. Military
  • Seventh-inning stretch: Professional wrestler CM Punk
  • Broadcast: Comcast SportsNet, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

Sunday, May 18, Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers, 1:20 p.m.

  • Throwback uniforms: Retro 1937 Cubs and Brewers uniforms
  • Promotion: Cubs Viewmaster® (first 5,000 kids 13-and-under)
  • Special Event: Youth Baseball and Softball Appreciation Day
  • First pitch and Seventh-inning stretch: Northwestern University men’s basketball coach Chris Collins
  • Broadcast: WGN-TV, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

Tuesday, May 20, Chicago Cubs vs. New York Yankees, 7:05 p.m.

  • First pitch: Three-time IndyCar champion Scott Dixon
  • Seventh-inning stretch: TBD
  • Broadcast: WGN-TV, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

Wednesday, May 21, Chicago Cubs vs. New York Yankees, 1:20 p.m.

  • First pitch: Jim Miller, Holabird & Root (architectural firm that designed Wrigley Field’s bleachers and hand-operated scoreboard)
  • Seventh-inning stretch: TBD
  • Broadcast: MLB Network, Comcast SportsNet, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

For more information on Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday celebration, please visit www.wrigleyfield100.com.

The Cubs marquee is going green to honor the 1930s

Babe Ruth Called Shot Bobblehead

The first 10,000 fans in attendance on May 16 will take home a Babe Ruth “Called Shot” Bobblehead.

While America was dealing with the Great Depression for much of the 1930s, Wrigley Field was bringing excitement and optimism to Chicago residents. That’s because the venerable ballpark housed a baseball team that won the National League pennant three times over the course of the decade.

This homestand, the Cubs will honor the success of those 1930s teams by giving Wrigley Field’s exterior a temporary makeover, sporting throwback uniforms and honoring one of the greatest ballplayers to ever play at the Friendly Confines.

Wrigley Field will mirror the sights and sounds of the 1930s as the Cubs host a decade-inspired homestand vs. the Milwaukee Brewers and New York Yankees. One familiar Chicago landmark will stand out in particular, as the famed Wrigley Field marquee will return to its green origins with gold trim from the mid-1930s. After the homestand, it will return to its modern red background with white trim.

On Wednesday morning, May 14, the Cubs will begin painting the marquee to match the color scheme following its installation in 1934. Benjamin Moore will provide limited-edition Cubs/Benjamin Moore T-shirts for up to 1,000 fans who wish to view the painting event Wednesday morning, and guests also are invited to contribute to painting a large-scale baseball bat-themed mural on-site.

Tickets for both the Brewers and Yankees series remain available at cubs.com or 800-THE-CUBS (800-843-2827). Here’s what’s in store for the homestand.

Throwback Uniforms:
On Sunday, May 18, the Cubs will wear a throwback uniform from 1937, the year during which Wrigley Field’s iconic scoreboard was installed and the ivy was planted on the newly constructed bleacher wall. The 1937 jersey features a zip-up front, and the uniform marks the first year the team switched from a navy blue to a royal blue color on its uniforms.

The visiting Milwaukee Brewers will wear a 1937-inspired retro uniform as well.

Promotional Giveaways:
The 1930s Bobblehead Friday showcases one of the most debated moments in baseball and Wrigley Field history—Babe Ruth’s “called shot” off Charlie Root in the 1932 World Series. The first 10,000 fans in the gate will receive the bobblehead on Friday, May 16.

The following day, 10,000 fans will receive a Cubs Umbrella presented by Morton Salt. The company is celebrating the 100th birthday of its signature Morton Salt Girl.

On Throwback Sunday, May 18, the first 5,000 kids 13-and-under will receive a Cubs Viewmaster, and the first 1,000 kids can run the bases postgame (weather permitting).

Special Event:
On Sunday, May 18, Youth Baseball and Softball Appreciation Day features specially priced Terrace Reserved Outfield tickets with the opportunity for uniformed players ages 13-and-under to run the bases postgame (weather permitting). For group sales of 15 guests or more, $3 per each ticket sold will be donated back to the participating league. Each child that attends will receive an exclusive Cubs youth sports band.

Specialty Food Offerings:
Levy Restaurants continues its decade-inspired menu at the Decade Diner, located inside Gate D near Section 142. The 1930s homestand features a Kraft Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich with thinly-sliced seasoned beef cooked with onions and mixed with Kraft American and White American cheeses, served on a toasted torpedo roll. The other homestand special is a favorite from mom’s kitchen. The hearty Meatloaf with Gravy dish features meatloaf glazed with honey ketchup, served with mashed potatoes, peas and carrots.

The Decade Dogs stand near Section 123 is serving a Cheese Steak Dog to represent the 1930s, featuring a Vienna Beef hot dog, shaved ribeye steak, grilled onions, peppers and provolone cheese.

Adults 21-and-over can enjoy a 1930s Called Shot cocktail—a Manhattan made with fans’ choice of Bulleit Bourbon, Bulleit Rye, Crown Royal or Bushmills Irish Whiskey. The Called Shot is served in limited-edition souvenir glasses from May 16-21 on the main concourse at Section 109 and at the bleacher patio in left field.

Historic Moments:
Some of Wrigley Field’s most noteworthy baseball moments occurred in the 1930s, and the ballpark’s most beloved landmarks came into existence during the decade as well.

On Oct. 1, 1932, in Game 3 of the World Series, Babe Ruth hit his highly-debated and much-celebrated “called shot” off Charlie Root. Moments before the home run, Ruth made a series of gestures—but was he calling his shot or responding to the bench-jockeying from the Cubs dugout?

On Sept. 28, 1938, moments after umpires declared the game would end at the completion of the ninth inning due to darkness, Gabby Hartnett hit his famous “Homer in the Gloamin’” to give the Cubs a two-out, walk-off win and vault them into first place. They would clinch the National League pennant three days later.

In terms of ballpark additions, the iconic Wrigley Field Marquee was added at the corner of Clark and Addison in 1934. The Marquee was originally green with gold trim and welcomed fans to Wrigley Field, Home of “The Cubs.”

A few years later in 1937, the Wrigley Field bleachers and scoreboard were constructed when the outfield area was renovated to provide improved and expanded seating. The Friendly Confines’ famous ivy was planted with 350 Japanese Bittersweet plants and 200 Boston Ivy plants taking root at the base of the new brick outfield walls.

To learn more about these historic moments and others, such as Hack Wilson’s record-setting RBI total, visit www.wrigleyfield100.com.

 

1920s Homestand Promotions and Guests: 5/2/14-5/6/14

Cubs Pink T_2

The Cubs will “Pink Out” the Budweiser Bleachers on May 6 in support of breast cancer awareness.

The Cubs will host the following promotions and guests in honor of the 1920s decade at Wrigley Field. Several first pitch and seventh-inning stretch conductors will be tied to the history of Wrigley Field.

1920s Homestand Recap: May 2-6
Friday, May 2, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals, 1:20 p.m.

  • Promotion: Limited-Edition Red Grange Bobblehead (first 10,000 fans)
  • First pitch: Former University of Illinois and current Chicago Bears cornerback Kelvin Hayden
  • Seventh-inning stretch: University of Illinois head football coach Tim Beckman and former Illini quarterback/current staff member Juice Williams
  • Broadcast: Comcast SportsNet, MLB Network, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

Saturday, May 3, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals, 12:05 p.m.

  • Promotion: Cubs Fedora Hat presented by Budweiser
  • First pitch: Chicago native and U.S. Olympic medalist figure skater Jason Brown
  • Seventh-inning stretch: Margaret Manning, Mary Manning and Barbara Ernesti (nieces of former Cubs female executive pioneer Margaret Donahue)
  • Broadcast: Comcast SportsNet, Fox Sports 1, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

Sunday, May 4, Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals, 7:05 p.m.

  • Throwback uniforms: Retro 1929 Cubs and Cardinals uniforms
  • Promotion: 1920s Cubs Yo-Yo (first 5,000 kids 13 and under)
  • First pitch: Actor Michael Urie, Broadway in Chicago’s Buyer & Cellar
  • Seventh-inning stretch: ESPN broadcasters John Kruk and Dan Shulman
  • Broadcast: ESPN, WGN 720-AM Radio, Cubs.com

*Crosstown Cup Series*
Monday, May 5, Chicago Cubs vs. Chicago White Sox, 7:05 p.m.

  • First pitch and Seventh-inning stretch: Chicago Bears kicker Robbie Gould
  • Broadcast: Comcast SportsNet, WGN 720-AM Radio, WRTO 1200-AM Spanish Radio, Cubs.com

Tuesday, May 6, Chicago Cubs vs. Chicago White Sox, 7:05 p.m.

  • Promotion: Cubs Charities “Pink Out” Shirt in the Budweiser Bleachers, presented by Advocate Health Care
  • First pitch and Seventh-inning stretch: Breast cancer survivors
  • Broadcast: WGN-TV, WGN 720-AM Radio, WRTO 1200-AM Spanish Radio, Cubs.com

 

For more information on Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday celebration, please visit www.wrigleyfield100.com.

 

Cubs continue decade-themed homestands by honoring 1920s

1929Flag

The Cubs will continue their celebration of 100 years of Wrigley Field by honoring the 1920s during the May 2-6 homestand against the Cardinals and White Sox. The team’s throwback uniform, promotional giveaways, specialty food and beverage offerings, and entertainment will mirror the sights and sounds of the 1920s at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs and Cardinals will face off on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball May 4 at 7:05 p.m. CST. ESPN Baseball Tonight’s Sunday Night Countdown will broadcast by the Cubs Store at the corner of Clark and Addison for the hour preceding the game.

Throwback Uniforms:
On Sunday, May 4, the Cubs will wear a throwback 1929 uniform to honor their National League championship team. That year was the first time a World Series was played at Wrigley Field. The visiting St. Louis Cardinals will wear a 1929-inspired retro uniform as well.

Promotional Giveaways:
On Friday, May 2, the Cubs’ historic bobblehead series will feature Red Grange, the University of Illinois running back who ran for three touchdowns as a sophomore in a 29-0 win over Northwestern University on Oct. 27, 1923. The following day, the first 10,000 adults 21-and-over to enter the ballpark will receive a Cubs Fedora Hat presented by Budweiser. On Sunday May 4, the first 5,000 kids 13-and-under will receive a Cubs Yo-Yo.

Special Event:
The 1920s homestand concludes on May 6 vs. the White Sox, when Cubs Charities will team up with Advocate Health Care to “Pink Out” the Budweiser Bleachers. On the last Cubs home game before Mother’s Day, each fan attending the game in the Budweiser Bleachers will receive a Cubs Charities “Save 2nd Base” T-shirt to promote breast cancer awareness and celebrate moms and women everywhere who are cancer survivors. T-shirts will be distributed at the gates by players’ and coaches’ wives.

Fans throughout the ballpark are encouraged to wear pink that day. The Cubs Store, located across from Wrigley Field at the corner of Clark and Addison streets, will display a “Pink Out” section with pink Cubs merchandise and a 10 percent discount on engraved pink bats for fans interested in participating.

All fans in attendance on May 6 are encouraged to participate in the Cubs Charities 50/50 Raffle, as proceeds will benefit mammograms for under- and uninsured women through Advocate Charitable Foundation. For tickets and information, visit cubs.com/pink.

Specialty Food Offerings:
Levy Restaurants will continue its decade-inspired menu at the Decade Diner, located inside Gate D near Section 142. The 1920s homestand specials feature a Kraft Italian Grinder Sandwich with sliced capiocola, salami, mortadella, ham and Kraft Provolone Cheese served on a garlic butter-toasted hoagie roll, as well as a Crispy Chicken Po Boy with crispy chicken tenders on a toasted hoagie roll with crisp shredded lettuce, tomato and Cajun aioli.

The Decade Dogs stand near Section 123 is serving decade-themed specialty hot dogs this season, with the classic Chicago Dog representing the 1920s. The Chicago Dog is available all season long and features a Vienna Beef hot dog, tomato wedges, pickle spears, sport peppers, diced onions, mustard, neon relish and celery salt, served on a poppyseed bun.

Adults 21-and-over can enjoy a 1920s Upper Deck Gin Rickey, a refreshing cocktail made with Tanqueray Gin, lime juice and basil-infused club soda, served in limited-edition souvenir glasses from May 2-6 on the main concourse at Section 109 and the bleacher patio in left field.

Tickets for both the Cardinals and White Sox series remain available at cubs.com or 800-THE-CUBS (800-843-2827).

Historic Moments:
Wrigley Field hosted several milestone moments in the 1920s that will be recognized as some of Wrigley Field’s 100 Great Times presented by Budweiser. These include Oct. 10, 1920, when the Chicago Tigers played the Racine Cardinals for the first professional football game at then-Cubs Park. In 1921, the Chicago Staleys (now Bears) made Cubs Park their new home. Cubs Park would be renamed Wrigley Field in 1926 and would host its first World Series game in 1929. To learn more about the historic moments that took place at Wrigley Field, visit www.wrigleyfield100.com.

Now Playing: The Cubs and Vine Line celebrate 100 years of Wrigley Field

It’s not every day people get to attend a 100th birthday party. On Wednesday, Vine Line was on hand with the rest of the Cubs faithful to celebrate Wrigley Field’s centennial and to be a part of the Party of the Century. The first 10,000 fans received cupcakes as they entered the stadium, and the first 30,000 took home a replica Chi-Feds jersey. The Cubs wore 1914 Chi-Feds throwback uniforms, while the Diamondbacks dressed as the Kansas City Packers (the Federal League club the home team faced 100 years prior).

The pregame ceremony included former Cubs players Ernie Banks, Glenn Beckert, Andre Dawson, Bobby Dernier, Ryan Dempster,  Fergie Jenkins, Gary Matthews, Milt Pappas and Billy Williams; Chicago Bears Hall of Famers Dick Butkus and Gale Sayers; members of the Weeghman family; and MLB Commissioner Bud Selig. During the fifth inning, fans sang “Happy Birthday” to the ballpark, and Dutchie Caray and a group of Cubs Hall of Famers led the seventh-inning stretch. If you missed the event, here’s our tribute to 100 years at the Friendly Confines.

1000 Words: Wrigley Field biplane flyover

Flyover

The Cubs concluded a memorable pregame ceremony to honor the 100th birthday of Wrigley Field with a historic biplane flyover. Several former Cubs players also took part in the festivities, including Ernie Banks, Glenn Beckert, Andre Dawson, Ryan Dempster, Bobby Dernier, Randy Hundley, Fergie Jenkins, Gary Matthews, Milt Pappas, Lee Smith and Billy Williams. Sam and Spencer Brown, Ron Santo’s grandchildren, stood in for the Cubs Hall of Famer, while Dick Butkus and Gale Sayers were on hand to commemorate the Chicago Bears nearly 50 years at the ballpark.

From the Pages of Vine Line: Wrigley Field 100th birthday photo gallery

Wrigley Field Memories

Few people get to see Wrigley Field in all her glory. This is before the hot dogs are on the grill, before the distinctive sound of cowhide meeting hard maple rings through the park, before 40,000 cheering fans make their way into the belly of the Friendly Confines.

The best time to experience Wrigley Field is in the morning, when the sun is shining and the park is empty. That’s when you can see the venerable, 100-year-old ballpark for what she is—a beautiful, lush green oasis in the middle of one of the most densely populated cities on the planet.

Bereft of fans, players and noise, you also get a better sense of just how anachronistic Wrigley Field is—from the brick outfield wall, to the ivy, to the manual scoreboard, to the light standards. Wrigley is a shrine to baseball. Not a modern, Disney-meets-Dave & Buster’s amusement park, where a sporting event just happens to be played amidst other fanfare designed to keep modern, iPhone-obsessed fans occupied. Wrigley is all about the game.

And sitting solo in the grandstand, it’s easy to imagine what the stadium looked like and felt like when Andre Dawson roamed right field, or Ron Santo manned the Hot Corner, or Grover Cleveland Alexander toed the slab. The concourses and halls of the stadium are filled with memories, stretching back past Babe Ruth’s supposed called shot.

For 100 years, Wrigley Field has been the altar upon which North Side baseball is consecrated. And a century of sporting (and other) events calls for a little celebration.

Ultimately, what else can be said about one of the great, historic cathedrals of baseball? We decided to turn it over to the people who know the stadium best and let the images and quotes speak for themselves.

Happy 100th birthday Wrigley Field. Here’s to 100 more. (Click the images below to start the slideshow.)

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