It is almost here. In about two weeks, baseball’s elite will gather in Cooperstown for the National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Weekend to welcome the three newest members Roberto Alomar, Bert Blyleven and Pat Gillick.
The list of returnees was released on Tuesday and includes: Henry Aaron, Luis Aparicio, Johnny Bench, Yogi Berra, Wade Boggs, George Brett, George Brett, Lou Brock, Jim Bunning, Rod Carew,Orlando Cepeda, Andre Dawson, Bobby Doerr, Dennis Eckersley, Rollie Fingers, Carlton Fisk, Whitey Ford, Goose Gossage, Tony Gwynn, Doug Harvey, Rickey Henderson, Whitey Herzog, Reggie Jackson, Fergie Jenkins, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Sandy Koufax, Tommy Lasorda, Juan Marichal, Bill Mazeroski, Willie Mays, Paul Molitor, Joe Morgan, Eddie Murray, Phil Niekro, Jim Palmer, Tony Pérez, Gaylord Perry, Jim Rice, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Ryne Sandberg, Mike Schmidt, Red Schoendienst, Tom Seaver, Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter, Don Sutton, Earl Weaver, Billy Williams, Dick Williams, Dave Winfield and Robin Yount.
Induction Weekend will take place from July 22 to 24, with the ceremony at 1:30 p.m . at the Clark Sports Center Sunday, July 24. Severe weather would force cancellation of the event.
According to a media release, seating is free and unlimited and the ceremony is expected to last around two hours. The ceremony will be televised live on MLB Network, broadcast nationally on Sirius XM Radio Home Plate Channel 175 and will be available via a Web cast at www.baseballhall.org.
On Saturday, July 23, the new Hall of Fame awards presentation will be held at 4:30 p.m. at Doubleday Field, where the returning Hall of Famers will gather on stage to honor the 2011 award winners. Longtime play-by-play announcer Dave Van Horne will receive the Ford C. Frick Award for major contributions to baseball broadcasting; Philadelphia Daily News national baseball columnist Bill Conlin will receive the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for meritorious contributions to baseball writing; and veteran baseball executive Roland Hemond will receive the Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement Award. Admission to both the July 23 Awards Presentation and the July 24 Induction Ceremony is free.
Gates will open at 4 p.m. for the 4:30 p.m. program, which is expected to last an hour, according to the release.
Singer and songwriter Terry Cashman will perform on the 30th anniversary of his baseball classic, Talkin’ Baseball.
Following the awards presentation, the Hall of Famers and Award winners participate in the Parade of Legends at 6:30 p.m. They will ride down Main Street in trucks provided by Ford Motor Co.
Family activities are scheduled throughout the Hall of Fame Weekend. They include:
• Play Ball with Ozzie Smith - special guests Rod Carew, Andre Dawson and Whitey Herzog: Ozzie Smith will return in a fundraiser for the Hall of Fame’s education and public programs with an opportunity for fans, featuring fellow Hall of Famers Rod Carew, Andre Dawson and Whitey Herzog. This two-hour event features interaction at each station with a living legend and includes special mementos.
Spaces are limited to 40 participants.
The donation is $600 per person, with Hall of Fame members admitted for $450. To reserve a spot, call 547-0397.
• Hall of Fame Spotlight Series: The brand new Hall of Fame Spotlight Series will feature discussions about writers and broadcasters, managing the game, the art of pitching and the rare combination of power and speed. Several Hall of Famers are scheduled to appear in programs throughout the day, with guests to be announced soon. The Spotlight Series is free and open to the public. Festivities will take place at from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday at Doubleday Field.
• Voices of the Game: Inductee Memories: The Hall of Fame’s newest members, Roberto Alomar, Bert Blyleven and Pat Gillick, participate in a Voices of the Game event. This event is for members only and tickets are currently available by visiting the membership desk in the museum or by calling 547- 0397. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and younger. The event will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday at the Clark Sports Center.
- Hall of Fame
- Maddux, La Russa choose not to choose HOF caps (AP) -- Greg Maddux and Tony La Russa will not have logos on their National Baseball Hall of Fame plaques, the Cooperstown shrine announced Thursday.
- Autumn Glory Exhibit open The National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown has unveiled its new "Autumn Glory" exhibit, which honors the World Series championship of the 2013 Boston Red Sox.
- Baseball HOF promotes three employees Three members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum's senior staff have been promoted to vice president, Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson announced on Tuesday.
- HOF to offer 'VIP Experience' again The legends and heroes of the national pastime call Cooperstown home. But for a few days this fall and next spring, fans can experience the Hall of Fame through an exclusive in-depth exploration.
- Hall changes process for Frick Award The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum's Board of Directors has restructured the procedures for the Ford C. Frick Award selection process, refining the criteria and organizing candidates by era, with changes effective immediately.
- Earliest ideas about creating a Hall of Fame exist in museum's archive Some eight decades ago, before there was a National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, folks in and around the game were hoping to somehow honor the National Pastime with a centennial celebration at what was thought to be the birthplace of the sport.
- Fingers to host Otesaga Senior Open His big league career was built on helping others - preserving 341 wins for teammates. This September, Rollie Fingers will reprise his most famous role in Cooperstown, helping a group of special students and connecting with fans at the 31st annual Otesaga Hotel Seniors Open and Pro-Am Golf Tournament.
- Race encourages being a 'Superior Example' The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Clark Sports Center teamed up for the second annual BASE Race on Sunday.
- HOF visitors approve of A-Rod suspension Fans outside the National Baseball of Fame weighed in on various topics surrounding the suspension of New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez by Major League Baseball on Monday.
- Induction Weekend still benefits community Each year many people come to Cooperstown to celebrate and join in the festivities of the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Weekend. For the local community, the weekend usually means increased business and a chance to share in a baseball tradition.
- More Hall of Fame Headlines