Salisbury, Md. - The Delmarva Shorebirds, class "A" affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, are extremely excited that the 2011 "Strike Out Hunger" All-Star Game is coming to Arthur W. Perdue Stadium on June 21 for the first time since 1999. This past week, the Shorebirds released new details related to the events surrounding the game. Below is a summation of all the events coming to the Eastern Shore.
ALL-STAR GAME LUNCHEON
The All-Star Game Luncheon will be held on June 21 at The Fountains Wedding & Conference Center from 11:30 to 2:00 p.m. Frank Perdue will be inducted into the prestigious SAL Hall of Fame along with former Gastonia Rangers player Mike Hargrove and former Asheville Tourists Manager Ray Hathaway.
Mr. Perdue's contributions to the Delmarva Shorebirds and subsequently the South Atlantic League were best summed up by Wicomico County Parks, Recreation and Tourism Director Gary Mackes in a 2005 article published in the Shorebirds 10th Anniversary Collector's Guide.
"If it was not for Frank Perdue's wallet and generosity, there would not be a stadium here in Wicomico County."
In the mid-1990's, Frank Perdue graciously agreed to donate approximately four million dollars to the joint venture between Maryland Baseball and Perdue to build a minor league baseball stadium, now known as Arthur W. Perdue Stadium. In addition to the monetary gift, Mr. Perdue also donated 39-acres of prime real estate for the construction site of the stadium. The real estate was owned by his company, Perdue Farms, Inc.
Andy MacPhail, who has been the President of Baseball Operations for the Orioles since 2007, will serve as the keynote speaker at the luncheon. MacPhail was the CEO/President of the Chicago Cubs from 1994-2006. In addition, he won two world series championships as the general manager of the Minnesota Twins in 1987 and 1991.
All of the South Atlantic League All-Stars will be formally introduced during the luncheon.
The luncheon will run from 11:30-2:00 p.m. at The Fountains Wedding & Conference Center located adjacent to route 50 less than one mile from Perdue Stadium. Luncheon tickets are open to the general public. Tickets, which include a catered meal, are $50 person and $400 for a table of eight.
CHEERWINE & STRAWBERRY CRUSH ALL-STAR FAN FEST
The All-Star Game Fan Fest, sponsored by Cheerwine & Strawberry Crush, will begin at 2:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Arthur W. Perdue Stadium. Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver is scheduled to appear at Fan Fest from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. to sign autographs and interact with fans. Weaver will also serve as an honorary manager and participate in the plate meeting before the game to exchange the lineup cards. Fans must have an all-star game ticket in order to attend Fan Fest.
Weaver, now 80-years old, managed the Baltimore Orioles for 17 years from 1968 to 1982 and from 1985 to 1986. Weaver won 1,480 as the skipper for the Orioles, which includes six Eastern Division titles, four American League pennants and a world championship in 1970. Weaver led the Orioles to five 100 plus win seasons (1969, 1970, 1971, 1979 & 1980). In his 17 years at the helm of the Orioles, Weaver had just one losing season. The Earl of Baltimore, as he was affectionately dubbed by loyal supporters, fashioned a winning percentage of .583 over his distinguished career.
In addition to Weaver's presence, the Shorebirds have a wide array of activities scheduled for the Cheerwine & Crush Strawberry All-Star Game Fan Fest. All Northern Division and Southern Division All-Star players and coaches will be signing autographs. Northern Division all-stars will sign autographs from 3:15 to 4:05 p.m. and the Southern Division participants will sign autographs from 4:15 to 5:05 p.m. Furthermore, fans will have the chance to watch both teams take batting practice.
The Shorebirds will have several inflatable's set up for kids of all ages including a moon bounce and a slide and castle combo.
Fan Fest will also feature the Amp Simulator Race Car, Oakley Glasses Mobile Tour, Dr. Pepper Football Toss, United States Air Force Raptor Vehicle and more.
BB&T HOME RUN DERBY
The BB&T Home Run Derby will begin at 5:30 at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium on June 21. The contest will feature the best power hitters in the South Atlantic League. Each hitter in the derby will have ten outs to blast as many home runs out of Perdue Stadium as possible. The top hitters from the first round will compete in the championship round for the grand prize of $500 to the winner of the BB&T Home Run Derby.
BB&T and their eleven branches in Worcester, Wicomico, Dorchester and Somerset counties will each host a special raffle that is running through June 10, where two lucky winners at each branch will get the chance to attend the South Atlantic League "Strike Out Hunger" All-Star Game for free courtesy of BB&T. In order for bank customers to have the opportunity to win free tickets, they must donate canned food items at any of the eleven branches on the Eastern Shore. BB&T will give one raffle ticket per canned food item donated. After June 10, each BB&T branch will draw a winner. All the canned food items collected at the branches will be distributed to the three local food banks connected to the 2011 "Strike Out Hunger" All-Star Game.
"BB&T is proud to support community activities," said Hunter Calloway, Senior Vice President Area Executive of BB&T. "Hosting the South Atlantic League All Star game in Salisbury is a great event for our community and BB&T is happy to sponsor the Home Run Derby as part of the overall All Star activities."
In 1999, when the Shorebirds last hosted the mid-season classic, Jay Gibbons was the home run derby champion. Gibbons went onto play nine years in the major leagues including seven with the Baltimore Orioles from 2001-2007.
ALL-STAR GAME PRESENTED BY PERDUE
The "Strike Out Hunger" All-Star Game will begin at 7:30 p.m. The best players from the Northern Division will square off against the best from the Southern Division. Top prospects such as Bryce Harper, Manny Machado and Christian Yelich have put up all-star caliber numbers to this point in the season .
Recent SAL all-stars include current major league players such as Josh Hamilton ('00 - Charleston RiverDogs), Jason Heyward ('08 - Rome Braves), Madison Bumgarner ('08 - Augusta GreenJackets), Brad Bergesen ('07 - Delmarva Shorebirds), Elvis Andrus ('06 - Rome Braves), Brian Wilson ('05 - Augusta GreenJackets), Ben Zobrist ('05 - Lexington Legends), Eric Young, Jr. ('06 - Asheville Tourists) and Andrew McCutchen ('06 - Hickory Crawdads).
Immediately following the final out, the Shorebirds will blast off a fireworks extravaganza. The fireworks show will be the biggest show of the 2011 season.
$25 Picnic Deck - Includes hour and a half buffet
$17 Field Box
$17 Luxury Level
$15 Reserved Box
$11 General Admission
Great seats still remain for the 2011 South Atlantic League All-Star Game. For more information, please contact the Delmarva Shorebirds at 410-219-3112.
The Delmarva Shorebirds are the Class "A" Affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles. The Shorebirds are owned by 7th Inning Stretch, L.P., the same company that owns the Stockton Ports of the California League and the Everett AquaSox of the Northwest League. The Shorebirds are the proud hosts of the 2011 South Atlantic League "Strike Out Hunger" All-Star Game presented by Perdue. The game will be contested on June 21, 2011. For more information, call the Shorebirds at 410-219-3112.
The Shorebirds are celebrating 16-years of professional baseball on the Eastern Shore. During the 2009 season, the Shorebirds finished with an average attendance of 3,567 fans, the largest average since the 2002 season. In 2007, The Shorebirds had the top attendance based on market size in Minor League Baseball(tm), according to Sports Business Journal (Aug. 2008). In 2010, more than 6,000 fans packed Arthur W. Perdue Stadium nine times including a season high of 8,993 fans on August 7th.
The Shorebirds were established in 1996 by an investor team headed by legendary chicken company owner, the late Frank Perdue. The Shorebirds have called Arthur W. Perdue home ever since. For more information about the Delmarva Shorebirds call 410-219-3112 or visit www.theshorebirds.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.