Posted on 11 April 2012.
ST. LOUIS – April 11, 2012 – A pre-game ceremony that officially welcomes home the reigning World Champions will punctuate a day of activities celebrating the annual return of baseball to St. Louis on Friday, April 13th. The Cardinals will take on the Chicago Cubs in a 2:15 p.m. game. Following is a schedule of official activities, some fun franchise facts and information to help baseball’s best fans enjoy what has become an unofficial holiday for Cardinal Nation.
Opening Day Ceremony Celebrates World Champions
While Opening Day in St. Louis is always special, this year promises to be extraordinary. Fans won’t want to miss a single minute of the opening ceremony that will begin at 1:30 p.m. with the Budweiser Clydesdales and will pay tribute to the 2011 World Championship team described as the greatest comeback team in the history of baseball. The ceremony will feature all four of the team’s Commissioner’s Trophies, as well as representatives of each of those World Championship teams (’67, ’82, ’06 & ’11). The ceremony will culminate with the formal raising of the 2011 World Championship Banner by the family of U.S. Army Specialist Jeffrey L. White, Jr. of Catawissa Missouri. Specialist White, who was serving his country in Operation Enduring Freedom, died April 3 in the Khost Province of Afghanistan when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device. Specialist White was an avid Cardinals fan who was home on leave for Game 7 of the World Series last October and was planning to attend Opening Day with his family before he was killed. Specialist Whites’ mother Paula, father Jeff and brothers Michael and Kyle will raise the championship banner.
10:00 a.m. – 1 p.m. Cardinals Official Opening Day Pre-Game Pep Rally, sponsored by Hardee’s: The Cardinals will host a pre-game pep rally in the Ballpark Village Lot, located directly across from Busch Stadium, at the corner of Clark Street and South Broadway. Local rock band Trixie Delight will perform from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Fredbird and Team Fredbird will be on hand to give away Opening Day tickets, autographed items and other Cardinals prizes. Fans can stop by the Hardee’s Photo Booth, where they can get their Opening Day picture taken for free and visit the Hardee’s Mobile Diner where, with the purchase of a Combo Meal, they will receive a complimentary Opening Day t-shirt. Other sponsors include: Budweiser, the United States Marine Corps, the United States Air Force, Dunkin Donuts, Energizer, First National Bank, Fox Theater, Fox Sports Midwest, Girl Scouts, Krispy Kreme, Lumiere/River City, MO Secretary of State, Muny, Papa John’s, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Tan Company and Qdoba
11:45 a.m. Gates open
Busch Magnet Schedule Day: All fans with a ticket ages 21 and over will receive a magnet with the 2012 Cardinals schedule, compliments of Busch Beer.
1:30 p.m. Pre-game ceremonies begin with an appearance by the famed Budweiser Clydesdales.
Introduce Missouri Governor Jeremiah “Jay” Nixon, St. Louis County Executive Charlie A. Dooley and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay
Introduce Fredbird & Team Fredbird.
Cardinals Hall-of-Famers will be introduced via a Ford Motorcade around the warning track, led by the 2013 Ford Escape.
Video Tribute to the 2011 World Champions
Introduce representatives of the last four World Championships who will escort in the Cardinals last four World Championship trophies….Mike Shannon (’67), Tommy Herr (’82), David Eckstein, Jim Edmonds (’06) and Tony La Russa and Dave Duncan (’11)
Introduce the reigning World Champion St. Louis Cardinals via Ford Motorcade (2012 Ford Platinum F-150s and 2012 Ford Raptor F-150s)
The family of U.S. Army Specialist Jeffrey L. White, Jr. will raise the 2011 World Championship Banner in Leftfield.
Introduce the Chicago Cubs and the starting lineups
American Bald Eagle flight, courtesy of the World Bird Sanctuary of St. Louis
Color Guard – The U.S. Marine Corps
A moment of silence to former Cardinals pitcher Bob Forsch
Shannon Magrane, singer and Season 11 contestant on American Idol, will sing the Star-Spangled Banner.
U.S. Air Force Flyover – Two F-16s
Ceremonial First Pitch
2:15 p.m. Game Time
Watching on TV
Fans can watch the game and pre-game ceremony in High Definition on FS-Midwest.
Fans can tune into KMOX (1120 AM) or one of the 117 stations in the Cardinals Radio Network to hear Mike Shannon & John Rooney call the game. The expanded pre-game show starts at 12:30pm.
Getting to the Game / Ramp Closures on I-64
MoDOT will not have any lane closures on state highways inside the city limits for Opening Day and Opening Weekend, except for those behind permanent barriers on Interstate 70. The department will start a project to renovate the driving surface of the double deck bridge on I-64 in May. One lane will be closed around the clock on westbound I-64 until late September. One lane will be closed around the clock on eastbound I-64 from late August until late October. At this time, several I-64 closures are planned for weekends, but will not be scheduled during Cardinal home games.
Alternative Transportation Reminder
MetroLink is a convenient alternative to driving, allowing fans to avoid the cost of parking and game day traffic. To avoid the cost of parking and game day traffic, fans can use one of nineteen free Park-Ride lots along the MetroLink line and take the train to Stadium Station, right across the street from the ballpark. Check the Metro website www.MetroSt.Louis.org for schedules and the Park-Ride lot nearest you. There are also plenty of buses in Missouri and Illinois that will get fans to Busch Stadium including the RedBird Express that departs from the Water Tower at St. Clair Square in Fairview Heights, Illinois. The first RedBird Express leaves 2 ½ hours before the game and runs every 5-10 minutes.
As the Cardinals begin their seventh season of play in the new Busch Stadium, the team has made a number of improvements to the stadium during the off-season.
- The Cardinals have updated all of the team’s World Championship signage throughout the ballpark to reflect the team’s 11th World Championship, including installing an 11th flag pole on the World Champions sign atop the out of town scoreboard, freshly painting pennants atop the Cardinals dugout and updating the exterior signage on the south side of Busch Stadium facing I-64, as well as other signage.
- The Champions Club has been rebranded the UMB Champions Club. The UMB Champions Club is the home to all four of the Cardinals World Championship Trophies (1967, 1982, 2006 and 2011) – officially referred to as “the Commissioner Trophies” in new custom built illuminated cabinets. The Cardinals have the distinction of having both the oldest and the newest Commissioner’s Trophy. The first Commissioner’s Trophy was awarded in 1967, when the Cardinals defeated the Boston Red Sox. The Cardinals hold the record for the most Commissioners trophies won in the National League (4), second only to the Yankees (7). Tiffany & Company developed the current trophy design beginning in 1999 for the winner of the 2000 World Series. The 30-pound trophy stands two-feet tall, has a diameter of 11 inches, and features 30 gold-plated flags – - one for each of the Major League Baseball teams — which rise above an arched baseball with latitude and longitude lines symbolizing the world that contain 24-karat vermeil baseball stitches. The team has also upgraded to new High-Definition energy efficient LED televisions, including the six-screen video array that acts as a major focal point in the club.
- The St. Louis Cardinals, in partnership with Sachs Electric, Microgrid Energy and the Electrical Connection and its IBEW Local One / NECA, have installed 106 Solar Electric panels on the roof of the ticket building and a concession canopy in the Ford Plaza. The new solar array will produce 37,000 kilowatt hours of energy each year, which is enough electricity to power all the retail stores at Busch Stadium for a year. While the savings achieved through the solar system demonstration project will be modest, the system will serve as an educational tool for renewable energy and become another focal point for sustainable efforts by the Cardinals as part of their “4 A Greener Game” program. The Cardinals have reduced their energy use by 20% and water use by 10% since the stadium opened. The team has recycled more than 1836 tons of solid waste, more than 575 tons of yard waste and more than 110 tons of composted organic material since 2008.
- 150 energy efficient LED flat screen HD televisions will be installed throughout the stadium this year, including a new special nine-screen video wall on the main concourse, just to the third base side of home plate. This array will measure approximately 7 feet by 13 feet, giving fans a great view of game action. Early in the season, all premium areas of the ballpark will be upgraded to HDTV to take advantage of the 24 HD channel in-house network.
- The Cardinals will be playing on a new infield and new warning track this season. The infield has a refined new mix of clay and sand to enhance overall playability in good weather, as well as improve its ability to handle more rain and remain playable.
- The Cardinals have added a few hundred seats at the terrace level of the ballpark, as well as painted and made additional smaller improvements to numerous areas of the ballpark during the off season.
New for the 2012 Season
- The team has installed nine ticket kiosks located outside the main Ticket Box Office on 8th Street. The convenient touch-screen kiosks allow fans to purchase or print their tickets 24 hours a day at no additional cost than if they were purchasing or picking up their tickets at the box office. One kiosk is also located within the Team Store at Clark & 8th Street. A dozen more kiosks will be installed around the perimeter of the ballpark over the next few weeks.
- While only the players can satisfy the fans’ hunger for another victory, Delaware North Companies Sportservice, the St. Louis Cardinals’ concessionaire for more than 50 years, is satisfying their hunger for great taste sensations by revealing four new live-action stations at the concessions level. Each station offers completely customizable, fresh menu options sure to please every appetite. New concepts include:
- The Asian Café at gate 1, featuring either rice or noodles topped with chicken or beef, fresh veggies and Asian-inspired sauces;
- The Carvery at gate 2, featuring marinated turkey or beef sliced right off bone, then piled high onto fresh-baked bread from St. Louis’ own Fazio’s Bakery;
- Sliders and Fries at section 148, featuring braised beef with au jus, pulled chicken with chipotle mayonnaise, and St. Louis-style barbecue pulled pork with grilled onions; and
- Coke Island at gate 1, popping up several delicious flavors of fresh popcorn, including butter, white cheddar, Cajun and Cinnamon Sweet Cardinal Corn.
- Back by popular demand from the World Series are two favorites: the St. Louis Barbecue Bacon Dog (available in sections 133, 168 and the Redbird Club), and Build Your Own Nachos (available in sections 131, 151 and the Redbird Club).
- The Official Cardinals Team Store features St. Louis’ widest selection of World Series Gold Program apparel – a limited-edition line of gold-lettered Cardinals World Series Championship jerseys, T-shirts, hats and more. Players will wear the commemorative jersey and hat throughout Opening Day Weekend. Fans will also find exclusive expanded lines of merchandise, including player look-alike toys and items for the home and outdoors, such as the “I ‘Heart’ David Freese” street sign. Back for the 2012 season are dozens of $12 and under souvenirs, including, mini-bats, koozies, magnets, baseball cards, jewelry, posters, postcards, foam fingers, foam claws, key chains, lanyards, pennants, player plaques, sunglasses and a pin of the month, now expanded for all 12 months of the year.
- Fans will want to stop by the Cardinals Authentics store in Ford Plaza (cardinals.com/authentics), the only place to get official, game-used, limited edition and autographed Cardinals memorabilia directly from the team. New this year are a number of exciting 2011 World Championship themed items, as well as items commemorating the 30th Anniversary of the 1982 World Championship. Fans can now order an engraved bat from Louisville Slugger, the official bat of MLB.
Cardinals Care Celebrates Fifteen Years of Helping Kids
Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation, is celebrating 15-years of supporting children. Since 1997 Cardinals Care has invested nearly $18 million in “Caring for Kids” both on and off the baseball field. Cardinals Care has provided nearly $11 million in grants to over 800 non-profit youth organizations and built 19 youth ball fields in local disadvantaged neighborhoods. Cardinals Care also runs Redbird Rookies, a free baseball league for kids who otherwise might not have the opportunity to play. In addition to providing all the uniforms, gloves, bats, balls and other equipment needed for each team, Redbird Rookies also provides extensive off-field support in the areas of health, education, mentoring and the cultural arts for each of the nearly 4,500 kids who participate in the program each year. Last year, Cardinals Care established the Joplin Recovery Fund with over $200,000 in fan donations to help the thousands of Joplin area children recover from one of the most destructive tornadoes in American history.
To mark the 15-year anniversary of the foundation, Cardinals Care is urging fans to support their on-going efforts to help children a variety of ways:
- Go RED for the Kids – Businesses, schools and other organizations are being asked to rally behind the team and Cardinals Care by participating in Cardinals RED for Kids. Piloted during the 2011 postseason, Cardinals RED for Kids is the team’s version of an office “dress down” day in which participating organizations make a donation to Cardinals Care in exchange for the opportunity to sport their Cardinal colors around the office on Opening Day. To participate, local businesses and organizations can visit cardinals.com/red
- 6K Run Home for Kids – lace up your jogging shoes and join the team for the 3rd annual run & walk on Sunday, September 16th. Learn more and sign up at www.cardinals.com/6K
- Donate directly at cardinals.com/community
Some Fun Franchise Facts
- · The Cardinals were founded in 1882 as an American Association Team called the St. Louis Brown Stockings.
- · In 1892, the team moved to the National League and changed the team name to the St. Louis Browns. In 1899, the name was changed to the Perfectos, and in 1900, the name was changed to the St. Louis Cardinals.
- · From 1902-1954, an American League Team called the St. Louis Browns also played in St. Louis. In 1954, they moved to Baltimore and became the Baltimore Orioles.
- · The Cardinals have won more than 9,300 games, 11 World Series Championships, 18 National League Pennants, 3 National League Eastern Division Titles, and 8 National League Central Division Titles.
- · There are more than 40 former Cardinal players and managers enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
- · In March of 1996 a group of investors led by Bill DeWitt Jr. purchased the Cardinals from Anheuser Busch.
- · Over the last 16 seasons, the team has finished in first place eight times, won three NL pennants and two World Series while drawing over 50 million fans
- · Baseball America named the Cardinals the 2011 Baseball Organization of the Year for the first time, recognizing that the team’s big league success was built upon a strong foundation of a restructured organization that claimed two minor league titles in 2011 and that since 2005 has among the most team-drafted players debut in the majors.
- · The Cardinals bring more than 3 million fans downtown each year, with more than a million coming from outside of the state of Missouri. 90% of fans come from outside the City of St. Louis.
- · In 2006 the Cardinals moved into the new $411 million Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis on April 10, 2006 (beating the Brewers 6-4). The team covered nearly 90 percent of the cost of the project, including infrastructure.
- · Nearly 21 Million fans have attended Cardinals games in the new Busch Stadium since it opened on April 10, 2006 (20,130,635 regular season attendance; 839,583 post season attendance).
- · There are approximately 3,000 day-of-game employees at Busch Stadium.
- · The St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association (RCGA) estimates that the economic impact of the 2012 Cardinals’ season on the St. Louis region will be approximately $322 million, with an estimated $160 million this year in direct impact and $162 million in in-direct regional economic activity.
- · In 2011, the Cardinals drew 3.093 million fans, with 27 sellout games – ranking 7th in MLB in attendance.
- · In 2011, the Cardinals had 36 Promotional Giveaways, ranging from magnet schedules and wall calendars to bats, hats, pennants and bobbleheads.
- · In 2011, the Cardinals implemented a new value-based ticket pricing system called Dynamic Pricing that allows the team to more accurately price single-game tickets on a day-to-day basis. The dynamic system was a success in helping achieve the goals of broadening the ticket-buying fan base, rewarding fans for buying earlier in the season, and protecting season ticket holder value. 80% of the games in 2011 were priced lower than in 2010. 65% of the games had tickets available for $10 or less. 35% of the games had tickets available for only $5.
- · Over the last 16 seasons, the Cardinals have donated nearly 4 million tickets to children and charities
- · Cardinals Care has distributed more than $18 million to area organizations and built 19 Youth Baseball Fields since it was founded in 1997.
- · Redbird Rookies now has 20 leagues, serving more than 4,500 kids in the St. Louis metropolitan area, as well as parts of rural Missouri and Illinois. In addition to organizing leagues for kids, Redbird Rookies provides services to kids such as youth mentoring programs, health screenings, and scholarship opportunities.
- · In 2011, Cardinals telecasts on FOX Sports Midwest generated the 2nd highest local market television ratings in Major League Baseball, the 12th straight year in which the Cardinals ranked among the top three teams. FOX Sports Midwest-produced Cardinals telecasts are shown in nine states and available in millions of homes.
- · The Cardinals radio network is the second largest in baseball with 117 stations in nine states (Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Tennessee) with the potential to reach over 21 million listeners.
- · In one year, the Stadium sells:
o 540,000 hot dogs;
o 181,000 pounds of nacho chips; and
o 32,000 gallons of nacho cheese.
- · During a typical season the Cardinals go through:
o 7,315,200 ft of paper towels
o 15,373,800 ft of toilet paper
- · The Cardinals’ “4 A Greener Game Program” launched in 2008 is credited with recycling more than 1836 tons of solid waste, more than 575 tons of yard waste and more than 110 tons of composted organic material.
- · The Cardinals have reduced their energy use by 20% and water use by 10% since the stadium opened in 2006.
- · The team’s concessionaire Delaware North Sportservice has donated more than $159,000 worth of food to Operation Food Search, with a waste diversion rate of 29%.
- · The Cardinals Web site (cardinals.com) is very popular with fans, drawing over 32.7 million visitors in season and over 13 million unique visitors a month.
- · The Cardinals have also been active in social media. The team has more than 1.2 million fans on Facebook (facebook/cardinals), and more than 120,000 followers on Twitter (@cardinals). In 2010, the Cardinals launched a social media based “Stand for Stan” campaign to celebrate Stan Musial that culminated in President Barack Obama awarding Stan Musial the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
- · In 1998, the Cardinals opened the $28 Million Roger Dean Stadium and Sports Complex in Jupiter, Florida. In 2002, the team purchased the Charlotte Rangers, renamed them the Palm Beach Cardinals and moved them to Jupiter.
- · Since 2005, the Cardinals have owned and operated the Class AA Texas League Springfield Cardinals franchise that plays at the new Hammons Field in Springfield, Missouri.
- · The St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame Museum (www.cardinals.com/museum) collection is the largest team-held collection in Major League Baseball and is second only to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in terms of size with over 16,000 memorabilia items and over 80,000 archival photographs.
BUSCH STADIUM – POLICY REMINDERS
Bag Inspections Policy
§ The standard game-day bag inspection policies for Busch Stadium will be in effect. Bags will be allowed that meet Major League Baseball’s standard size restriction (16”x16”x8”), and all bags will be inspected prior to entry.
§ Fans will be permitted to bring small personal cameras and will be subject to inspection. No professional-sized photography equipment will be allowed except for members of the media with proper MLB credentials.
§ Non-alcoholic beverages such as water & soda in open cups or in clear plastic bottles no larger than 2 liters are allowed.
§ Alcohol, bottles, cans, thermoses, hard-sided coolers; hard plastic cups/mugs are not permitted.
§ Small banners and signs are allowed. Banners may be displayed as long as they do not hinder or interfere with a ball in play or distract or interfere with the view of another guest. Banners may not be displayed in fair territory, be obscene or in poor taste, attract abuse or cause a disturbance among other guests. They should be baseball-oriented and not commercial in nature.
§ Please minimize items you bring into the stadium to speed up the inspection process.
§ Expect long lines upon entry and allow yourself plenty of time to go through the inspection process.
Standard Exit/Re-entry Policies are in effect. Guests wishing to leave the stadium, but planning to return during the same game must have their hand stamped at Gates 1, 2 or 4 as they exit the stadium. Guests must show ticket upon re-entry. Inspection policy will also be enforced.
No Smoking Policy
Standard Busch Stadium Smoking Policy is in effect. Busch Stadium is a smoke-free facility. Exit/Re-Entry turnstiles will be set up at Gates 1, 2 and 4 to allow fans access in and out of the stadium if they wish to smoke. Fans will get their hand stamped as they exit the stadium. Guests must show ticket upon re-entry. Inspection policy will also be enforced.