We spent a nice afternoon on Monday at the Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati watching the Reds play the Mets. Pedro Martinez made his season debut after over a year away because of shoulder surgery. We still love him from his days with the Red Sox and were thrilled to cheer him on to his 3000th strikeout and his 1st win of 2007. We had great seats and the opportunity to become part of Mets-Nation-on-the-road, getting soundly booed every time we cheered for the Mets.
The Cincinnati Reds know how to make fans welcome. The park is beautiful, with wide promenades overlooking the Ohio river, a playground for toddlers, clean bathrooms (hear that, Fenway?), and misters to cool people off. But it seems to me that they’ve gone to absurd lengths to get people into the seats.
On September 12th, the Reds and Iam’s Pet foods are sponsoring a “bring your dog to the game” day. If you don’t believe me, check out:
Iam’s and the Reds will award prizes for best dog tricks, for best-dressed Reds dog and for largest and smallest dogs. There will be a fetch contest and, craziest of all, a pet parade on the warning track. Mind you—this is the warning track that the great Ken Griffey, Jr. and the rising star Adam Dunn patrol. (Watch your step, fellas!) You couldn’t pay me enough to be part of the grounds crew or stadium cleaning crew for this game.
Tasha would love this event—the opportunity to sniff and lick all that dropped food would be a taste of heaven for her. I can just see Marj’s dog Maddie taking the leap off the promenade and swimming the Ohio River, just for fun. As for the thousands of other dogs and their owners that the team is trying to draw in with this promotion…I just shake my head and cannot imagine the chaos.
The Cincinnati Reds are going to absurd and almost irrational lengths to get people into their park.
Just as dogs don’t belong in a ballpark, surely we don’t belong in Heaven. But hasn’t God gone to an absurd, almost irrational length to fill the seats around His banquet table? Jesus is our ticket, now and forever. No StubHub or Ticketmaster needed.