A while back this spring, Carl and I got an unusual call about playing a fun new event. It seems that they were going to build a new ballpark in the city of Utica Michigan, and were looking for musicians to add some musical flavor to the experience.
In our case, they were looking for a band to play some music for an Irish Night at the ballpark.
Ok, before I get too far ahead of myself, the ball park is the new, Jimmy John’s Field, just outside of Utica, right off of M-59. The cutest little stadium that you ever want to see.
Apparently, the owners have searched all over the country to find the right blend of fun, atmosphere and amenities to keep everyone happily coming back for more.
At the moment three different teams all play each other in a round-robin type competition, where the real winner are the fans.
Jimmy John’s Stadium has all the look and feel of any big league park, and yet, the closeness, and intimacy of a home-town venue. You simply feel, “at home”, the minute you pull up to park, and are not gouged for the first in a long line of $20 bills.
We were swept away with this innovative idea, the moment we pulled up on Saturday. Why were we there on Saturday, if the first game doesn’t even start until Monday, you ask?
As I mentioned, were were slotted to play in August on “Irish Night, however, since they needed someone to test the sound system, and musical logistic issues that might arise, they called on us to volunteer.
It was all great fun, as we set up in the outfield pavilion, facing the grandstand, on this hot May afternoon.
Ready to play at 6:00, it became apparent that some of the wiring had not completely been finished; we finally threw out the first song at about 6:40.
After adjusting our output levels, we received word that everything was working great. In all we played about four songs., to the delight of the crowd.
Having met all three mascots, it was time to tour the stadium, and sample some of the outstanding food. We could do that.
It was a fun filled evening that really got us excited for the night in August when we will hopefully get everyone of the 4,200 people singing about Green Alligators and Unicorns!
I bet it arrived before we know it.
Special Note: Thanks to Richard Pouncey for the great pictures!