2015 Triple-A All-Star Game – Day 1
Greetings from Omaha, Nebraska!
The 2015 Triple-A All-Star Game is taking place at Werner Park in Omaha, Nebraska this week and I made the trip, along with a handful of Charlotte Knights front office members — four on Sunday and four more on Monday! Also, our friends from Ovations are here as well. That might be more than a handful. Maybe it’s a contingent?
I’m really looking forward to taking in the week’s events from Omaha. This is going to be a great learning experience for me and the staff, as we will host the game next season from BB&T Ballpark in Uptown Charlotte! Plus, this is my first time to Nebraska. Yes, I know, that’s a shock to everyone…
After a busy Saturday night of finishing game notes for Sunday’s Knights first-half finale, I got some rest and woke up Sunday morning ready to embark on All-Star week. First, I had to pack — and finish some more Knights Knotes — but I was ready. Matt Millward, the Knights Director of Tickets, picked me up from my house and we were on our way to the airport. We had an 11:20 AM flight out of Charlotte and we were both eager to board the plane, land, and make our way around Omaha.
After meeting up with Lindsey Roycraft, the Knights Community Relations Director, and Kathryn Bobel, the Knights Group Sales Rep, at the airport, we were ready to board our flight and head to the land of… corn?
Once we landed (it was only around 12:45 PM — thanks to Nebraska being in the central time zone), we made our way through the airport. Once at the airport, I noticed an interesting sign — one that I have never seen before. Remember, I’m a native New Yorker, who also grew up in Pennsylvania, and has lived in the South for the past four years. I’m certainly not in any of those places now!
We were greeted by members of the Omaha StormChasers, the hosts of this year’s All-Star Game, and they had a car waiting for us. Great service! That was a nice touch!
Next up was our trip to the hotel. Once there, we dropped our stuff off and made our way around. After grabbing a bite to eat and hanging out in the hotel for an hour or so, I ran into one of my all-time favorite players, Darryl Strawberry.
Growing up in Brooklyn, NY — and a Mets fan — Strawberry was one player who I always looked up to and admired. Of course, living in NY and being raised in the 80’s, Strawberry was an icon to me. He was in Omaha for the Celebrity Fan Fest softball game later that night. It was nice to see the “Strawman” for a few minutes.
Later in the day, the four of us made our way over to Werner Park to check things out. We caught the tail-end of the Fan Fest, but enjoyed what we saw.
Opened in 2011, Werner Park has a capacity of 9,023, with 6,434 seats, 15 suites, and grass berm seating. It looks like a really nice ballpark and while I didn’t get a chance to move around it too much on Sunday, I plan to do more of that on Monday during the Home Run Derby festivities.
One other thing to note — the weather is hot here! I am certainly used to working in heat, but it seems even hotter here than in Charlotte. I wonder how that will bode for the Home Run Derby? Will the ball fly out of Werner Park? I hope so — and I am sure the fans do as well.
With the first day in the books, and day two now underway, I’m ready to see some baseball. With four Knights named All-Stars, there will be plenty to report about.
Stay tuned for updates from Monday’s Home Run Derby as Matt Davidson will represent the Charlotte Knights — and defend his 2013 crown.
I’ll have live reports from the Werner Park press box all week on Twitter @Tommy_the_V, so make sure to follow along!