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If you go
What: Stitch N’ Pitch with the TinCaps
Where: Parkview Field
When: 3:05 p.m. May 15
Cost: $15 which includes seat, food voucher and goodie bag; $9 just for reserved seat
For more information, call Brent Harring at 407-2816 or e-mail harring@tincaps.com.
Swikar Patel | The Journal Gazette
Fort Wayne TinCaps mascott Johnny knits in the home dugout at Parkview Field.

Stitch N’ Pitch perfect double play

Parkview Field is springing to life, like just about everything this time of year, and there’s buzz in the air among the TinCaps staff about the upcoming baseball season.

In addition to the excitement of opening day, which is April 7, Brent Harring, ticket sales manager, and Abby Naas, assistant director of marketing-community relations for the ballclub, are excited about a new theme day added to this year’s schedule.

Stitch N’ Pitch, a program of the National NeedleArts Association, is coming to a TinCaps game, specifically, the 3:05 p.m. game May 15 against the Dayton Dragons (a minor league affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds).

Why are Harring and Naas so excited?

“It’s basically combining, I guess you could call it, two of America’s favorite pastimes,” Harring said.

For Naas, it’s the concept of introducing baseball to someone who may not otherwise come to a game, but also the concept of being able to combine two popular pastimes into one event.

The ballclub has talked about doing a Stitch N’ Pitch in the past, but decided if the TinCaps were to host such an event that they wanted to give themselves plenty of time to promote it to draw as large a crowd of needleworkers as possible.

“It’s an opportunity to sit amongst friends,” she said, and enjoy the baseball and needlework at one time.

The ballclub has put 300 seats on hold in the section behind home plate (behind the nets to prevent furiously working needle artists from being hit on the head by foul balls).

The cost, for needle artists, is $15 and the price includes the seat in the reserved section, a voucher for a hot dog, chips and soft drink and a gift bag with items that include magazines by DRG Publications in Berne, publishers of magazines such as Crochet!, Creative Knitting and Quilter’s World.

Have a spouse/significant other who enjoys baseball but not needlework? Well, there’s a pricing package that takes them into account, too.

For $9 any family members not participating in the Stitch N’ Pitch program can enjoy the game with you.

Deadline to buy tickets is May 2. Fliers for the theme day have been distributed to local local needlework-related shops (yarn stores, quilt shops, etc.).

Some shops are even taking the orders in and plan to place one large order for tickets so they can sit together as a group, Harring said.

What happens if, say, they sell out before May 2? Well, they can’t say for sure, but there are some additional seats they can add to the Stitch N’ Pitch pool.

Harring and Naas are still in the process of coming up with game-day events related to needlework, but one idea being kicked around is the ceremonial first pitch of the game being with a ball of yarn instead of a baseball.

As for their turnout expectations for the inaugural event: “I would be disappointed with anything less than a hundred,” Harring said. “Other than that, it’s more about getting people out here and having fun.”

Joyce McCartney is not a craft expert. She is, however, interested in crafting of all types. She shares her experiences and those of area crafters. To reach her, call 461-8364 or email craftyliving@jg.net. Also, visit her blog at www.journalgazette.net/craftyliving. There, you will also find the weekly knitting podcast Math4Knitters.

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