FCBL All-Star Game/Holman celebration moved to Wednesday
NASHUA – Mother Nature is a party pooper.
The Stars won’t be shining at Holman Stadium on Tuesday night, which also means a change for the 80th Birthday Celebration of the facility as well.
That’s the bad news. The good news is the Birthday Party and Futures Collegiate League All-Star Game will still take place, now moved to Wednesday due to a dire weather forecast of the possibility of severe thunderstorms with the potential for an inch of rain later Tuesday afternoon and into Tuesday evening.
All 2,000 of the free tickets have been distributed already, and they are still good for Wednesday’s event. However, Nashua Silver Knights general manager Rick Muntean is urging those who can’t use them due to the change of days to return them to the Holman Stadium box office on Tuesday as the team has had several requests for tickets.
The change alters the schedule a bit, as there will be no band (the group Jimmy Pockets was scheduled) performing mid-afternoon nor will there be kids games on the field. But event organizers said Monday afternoon they saw no other choice, especially for safety’s sake. The event took about three months to plan by a committee appointed/organized by city officials.
“It’s going to rain, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that,” Nashua Parks-Recreation Director Nick Caggiano said, adding that the full tarp would be placed over the infield late in the day Monday. “But it’s absolutely great we’ll still be able to have the game and a lot of the celebration.”
“It was pretty much a no-brainer,” Muntean said. “You don’t want to play an All-Star game in those conditions. It is not an ideal scenario by any means because we had a helluva day planned, an all-day thing. But it’s as good as we can do. We need to have a great crowd.”
Caggiano said a face painter and other kids activities will take place later from 6 to 8 p.m. on the main concourse just inside the gates and the bounce houses will be open. The afternoon concert and on-field youth games, as well as the Area Code Games baseball exhibition that was slated for 9 a.m.are canceled.
Meanwhile, on the good news front, the entertainment icon from the Nashua Pride days, Monkey Boy, is still scheduled to appear, Muntean said. His alter ego, Chris Ames, was working on new flight arrangements, according to Muntean.
“We had calls from people asking if they can get Monkey Boy autographs,” Muntean said.
But, the FCBL will be holding its scout day activities/workouts, open to the public, beginning around 1 p.m. with players reporting and the main workouts in front of Major League scouts in full gear by 2:15. Team photos will be taken early in the afternoon and the gates at Holman will be open for the entire day beginning at noon, Muntean said.
The FCBL Home Run Derby will take place beginning at 5:30 p.m., and opening remarks by local and regional dignitaries and ceremonies will begin shortly after, between 6 and 6:15 p.m. The All-Star game, with the teams wearing the old time Nashua Dodgers home and away uniforms, is slated to begin between 6:45 and 7 p.m. with a fireworks show to follow.
“We’re devastated to some degree because of all the work by the city of Nashua and the (Silver Knights) front office to give us a great day,” FCBL Commissioner Chris Hall said. “But hopefully we’ll have a great day Wednesday, still have a game, and still celebrate.
“We’re still going to be doing a lot of things, the home run derby will still be an event, we’ll have some speakers ahead of time which will be great.”
Muntean consulted with weather people around 8 a.m.on Monday and talked extensively with Caggiano and Futures League commissioner Chris Hall throughout the morning.
“The city and Nick Caggiano have been 100 percent helpful in this whole thing,” Muntean said. “Not an ideal scenario, but with the coordination and help of the city, I think we’re going to be in fine shape.”
Hall said the only scout workout even that may be tenuous is the 60-yard dash if the field is still damp Wednesday from the expected rain.
There will still be a silent auction during the All-Star game for the game-worn uniforms, Muntean said, with a table set up on the front concourse.
There is a silver lining – no pun intended – Muntean said. Now the event won’t conflict with Tuesday night’s Major League All-Star Game.
“For the baseball fan, now they’re getting the best of both worlds,” Muntean said. “They get to watch the MLB game (Tuesday) and then come to our game on Wednesday night.
“I want the place to be packed. Hopefully that still happens.”
Here is the revised schedule for what is now Wednesday’s FCBL All-Star Game/Holman Stadium 80th Birthday Celebration
12 p.m.– Gates open.
1 p.m. – Players report, dress, scout day activities begin.
5:30 p.m. – Futures League Home Run Derby (four contestants)
6-8 p.m.: Kids activities on the concourse.
6:15 p.m. (approximate) Opening ceremonies involving local and regional officials addressing the crowd.
6:45 p.m. – Player intros on the field, with first pitch to follow at about 7.
7-10 p.m. Silent auction of game worn uniforms on the concourse.
Post game – Fireworks show scheduled.
CANCELLED: Morning Area Code Game, afternoon band concert, on-field Kids Games.
NOTE: All tickets distributed for Tuesday’s event are now good for Wednesday. The Silver Knights request if they can’t be used, that they be returned to the box office on Tuesday so they may be available for others who have requested tickets.