Fan Fest, Saturday and Sunday (July 11-12)
Sure, attending the HR Derby and the ASG were the primary focus of the trip. However, we were also eagerly anticipating the MLB Fan Fest being held at the Duke Energy Convention Center. It is the greatest collection of memorabilia, souvenirs, cards and baseball activities located anywhere. Let’s just say that Mac was ready for this part of the trip. Our plan was to get up early on Sunday and spend the entire day there. However, Saturday morning, Mac asked if we could go on Saturday as well.
Absolutely. What is better than a day at Fan Fest? Two days!
After running a 5K and walking two additional miles, we were ready to head over to Fan Fest. The event was held at the Duke Energy Convention Center which was about a 15 minute walk from the house. We ended up spending the entire Saturday afternoon there, then we got up the next morning and went back for a few more hours. The following summary combines both days so these are not necessarily in chronological order.
Here we are at the main entrance which featured a large image of Paul Goldschmidt above the door.
Priority Number 1
Ever since Mac learned about this trip to Cincinnati, he has been focused on one specific souvenir. An authentic Paul Goldschmidt National League jersey. This is serious business. Mac counts down the days every year until ASG uniforms and hats are unveiled. This is a big deal in our household. Upon entering the building, we went straight to the Majestic Jersey store. It is a great set-up. The jerseys are embroidered to-order on the spot. On a slower day like this, Mac had his jersey in about 30 minutes.
Here it is coming through the assembly process.
One happy kid with the jersey he did not take off for the next five days.
ASG Batting Practice Hats. Originally, we were going to purchase the caps used by the players in the game. Once they were revealed, Mac and I decided that we weren’t big fans of the new caps. Instead, we chose to go with the hometown Reds BP caps with official ASG logo. Mac chose the Road cap, while I went with the Home version.
Figurines, Figurines and more Figurines
As been evidenced in other posts, Mac loves baseball figurines. Specifically, McFarlane and Starting Line Up items. There was going to be a good chance that several of these might be found at Fan Fest. Going in, Mac had $100 in birthday money to purchase any figurines of his choice. This was going to be tough choosing for Mac. First of all, the selection was immense. Second, they were all so cool. How do you choose?
Here Mac is looking over some Starting Line-Up guys. These all came out in the 90’s and featured then-current players and a Cooperstown Collection.
Mac and Mandy checking out a few together.
Wonder if there are any bobbleheads to look at, too?
Look! More bobbleheads. I like the Racing Sausage item from the Brewers in the middle of the picture.
Oh, maybe some figurines as well.
First day tally.
Starting Line-Up: Ken Griffey, Jr (going over the CF wall), Roger Hornsby, Cal Ripken, Jr., Edgar Martinez and Barry Bonds.
McFarlane: Joe Morgan (Cincinnati Reds Edition) and Bryce Harper
Second Day Acquisitions
McFarlanes: Anthony Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton
Starting Line-Up: Gary Carter (Expos), Derek Jeter, Mitch Williams
Bobblehead: Tom Browning (Perfect Game Edition)
Taking a mid-day break with a couple of the new guys
Seen and Heard Around the Fest
HOF Frank Thomas
Reunion of 1990 Reds World Series Team including Barry Larkin, Nasty Boys and Ron Oester
Clinic being led by Arizona Softball Star, Jennie Finch
The World’s Largest Baseball
Instagram Photo Op
Reds Mural – The Kid
MLB Network with Superimposed Harold Reynolds
15 Seconds of Fame
While walking around, Mac and I were approached by a reporter from MLB.com. We spent a few minutes with her and ended up in MLB’s recap of Fan Fest Day 2. You can check it out here:
Even more interesting is the backstory on the reporter, Megan Zahneis. She became a reporter for the site after winning the Jackie Robinson Breaking Barriers Award. Megan is a remarkable young lady.
Couple of our Favorite Exhibitors
Checking out Gloves and Catcher Masks from the 1930’s
Franklin Batting Gloves Booth
Trying on J-Up’s gloves
We found Goldy’s gloves!
Rawlings had a VERY comfortable chair
Another fun part of Fan Fest are the activities set up for kids. Here is a sampling.
Under Armour Skills Competition
Earned his Stripes!
MLB – Home Run Derby