Category: Dublin

2013 BallhawkFest: West Coast Edition

Who: ALL WEST COAST BALLHAWKS!
What: BallhawkFest 2013: West Coast Edition
Where: Oakland
When: May 18th
Why: Why Not? 🙂

I was talking with a few ballhawks in the Bay Area, and we all expressed intrest in coming together for a day of Ballhawking.

History of BallhawkFest:
In early 2011, Alan Schuster, the Founder/Creater/Admin over at MyGameBalls.com proposed a MyGameBalls.com BallhawkFest. In April 2011, he wrote a quick article about it that you can check out here. At the end of May 2011, he gave another update in regards to a BallhawkFest. There were a lot of ballhawks that showed up for the July 23rd date at Camden Yards, and you can read about it on many blogs, such as Observing Baseball, Cook & Sons’ Baseball Adventures, and The Baseball Collector. From what I understand, it was a very successful day of softball, food, and ballhawking!

In February 2012, Alan worked with Matt Jackson to not only bring back BallhawkFest, but create one for people on the West Coast as well! You can read all about that entry here. BallhawkFest was at PNC Park in 2012, and it was VERY successful. You can read all about it at MyGameBalls.com, Cook & Sons’ Baseball Adventures, or Chasing Baseballs. This event was VERY successful, with a combination of *52* snagged balls between 8 people (4 of those are Cooks)! The West Coast version was scheudled for Saturday, July 28th, 2012 at Angel Stadium. Matt Jackson talked about on his blog in late May, which you can find here, as well as the week before at MyGameBalls.com here. I had been hoping to go, but wasn’t able to make it down to LA due to complications. I’ll be straight up honest: it was a complete bust. I know Matt showed up… but I don’t know if any other ballhawks did, and I feel bad about that. I have to give credit to him, as he worked so hard to put it all together, it was hard to see if not come through.

To sum it all up: A bunch of ballhawks get together to play softball, eat lunch, and ballhawk!

Choosing the Date:
Obviously, AT&T Park is already crowded enough, plus tickets are expensive, so I ruled that out. I wanted to be able to go to a BallhawkFest, and I thought having it at the Oakland Coliseum would be perfect!

I figured that since the Oakland Coliseum opens 2 hours early on Saturday and Sunday compared to 1.5 hours Monday-Friday, I took a look at all of the weekend night games, to ensure that there would be BP, and lots of it!

Of the 4 weekend night games that the A’s have, one of them is a jersey day against the Red Sox, which probably isn’t the best idea. That left me with May 18th, August 17th, and August 31st. I then ruled out the 17th, as it is a Yoenis Cespdes bobblehead day. The other 2 dates were both firework nights, so it was just a matter of choosing a date. I knew that former Oakland ballhawk Rick Gold, would be in town May 18th, so I decided to go with that date!

Organization
In the past, the ballhawks have grouped up at a local baseball field for a HR Derby of some sort before heading over for lunch, then heading over to the game!

I have two different options for Softball and Food…

(1A) I looked at the parks around the Coliseum, and realized that Mosswood park is only 20 minutes away from the Coli! I’ve played pickup softball there before, and it is a great park to play at!Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 3.30.46 PM

(1B) I then realized that one of my family’s favorite pizza restaurants, Zachary’s Chicago Pizza, s only 5 minutes away from the park.Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 3.30.26 PM

(1C) This puts the Oakland Coliseum a 25 minute drive away!
Screen Shot 2013-02-26 at 9.53.46 PM

This is a Possible Outline for the day:
12:00-12:30: Arrive at Mosswood Park!
12:30-1:30: Play Softball/Baseball/Home Run Derby!
1:30ish: Head to Pizza!
2:30-2:45: Head to the Coliseum!
3:00ish: Arrive at the Coliseum!
4:05pm: Gates Open!
6:05pm: Game Starts!

(2A) There is a park in a nearby city called Dublin named Emerald Glen Park that houses a fill size baseball field with a grass infield, literally 3 minutes of walking away from a great pizza place.Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 3.25.57 PM

(2B) That restaurant is called Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria.Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 3.25.11 PM

(2C) This puts the Oakland Coliseum a 20 minute drive away!
Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 3.21.38 PM

This is a Possible Outline for the day:
12:00-12:30: Arrive in Dublin!
12:30-1:30: Play Softball/Baseball/Home Run Derby!
1:30ish: Head to Pizza!
2:30ish: Head to the Coliseum!
2:45-3:00: Arrive at the Coliseum!
4:05pm: Gates Open!
6:05pm: Game Starts!

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Here is the deal: I have talked to Alan about it and he has expressed concerns. Obviously, with the complete flop of BallhawkFest: West, last year, he is hesitant to make this MyGameBalls.com official. Even if we can’t get enough people, this will still be “unofficial.”

If you are interested in attending, BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW. It is a fireworks night, so it WILL (Believe it or not) sell out. Once you have purchased tickets, please email me nickbatters@gmail.com. Even if you are slightly interested, email me at that address to keep in contact.  If you have any questions, email me and I will answer them for you.

It is important for me to get a headcount to Alan as soon as possible. Ideally, we are shooting for AT LEAST *10* people. If you have any family, friends, or know of any other people that would like to attend, direct them to this post, them have them email me.

Once I get an official head count, we can work to design shirts and I’ll put them up at my Spreadshirt store at the cheapest price they will let me. Maybe we can put the total # of balls each person has snagged in the life on the back or something. I don’ know.

 

So, again…

* Buy your tickets to the May 18th A’s game vs the Royals NOW

* Email me at nickbatters@gmail.com once you have purchased your tickets, or if you are interested. I will keep 2 separate lists. Also send me an email if you have ANY questions. Feel free also to comment down below.

* Let me know if we should go the Oakland (1) or Dublin (2) route for pre-game activities.

* TELL EVERYONE. The more the merrier, so tell everyone you know!

Hopefully, this will be a fun event that will end up being MASSIVELY SUCCESSFUL!!! 🙂

300x50_mlblogs_top100 Nick Badders is a unofficial reporter for MLB.com. He writes the blog, 7000 Coliseum Way, and you can follow him on Twitter @nickbatters or his blog @7000ColiseumWay. You can also LIKE his blog on Facebook or follow him @nickbatters or his blog @7000ColiseumWay on Instagram. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.