The Friends of Warren Ballpark’s 4th Copper City Classic Vintage Base Ball Tournament was a success, thanks to our volunteers, teams, vendors and cranks (fans). We had our most successful year yet, increasing both attendance and receipts.
We thank the teams of the Arizona Territories Vintage Base Ball League and the Colorado All-Stars who enlivened the tournament with their colorful uniforms. Arbitrator, Pat Kelly of the Tombstone Vigilantes kept the players and cranks in line. Tom Halleran of the Society of American Baseball Researchers announced the morning games. Matt Raisman from Cherry Creek Radio kept up a lively patter with the teams during the afternoon games. Give Cherry Creek a listen: K101, all hits, all the time; KWCD, Pure Country; and KTAN, news & talk radio.
Thanks to the 555 Grill, in Old Bisbee, for serving a large crowd at the Saturday night post-game show. The post-show was well attended. Jim Elfers, author of The Tour to End All Tours, shared many photos about the New York Giants-Chicago White Sox 1913-1914 world tour team that played a game at Warren Ballpark. Mike Anderson, author of Warren Ballpark, discussed Tony Antista, a shining star for Bisbee, hitting a scorching, league-leading 430 in 1930. The Antista family was well-represented to honor their beloved Tony. “Mudcat” Grant, 21-game winner and author of The Black Aces, spoke movingly about his friend Earl Wilson, 22-game pitcher for the Detroit Tigers and about the experience of early African-American major league baseball players.
Special thanks go to the Copper Queen Hotel for taking such good care of our new friend “Mudcat” Grant. He even got to sing the blues with Cat Daddy’s band. Mr. Grant has become an honorary member the Friends of Warren Ballpark and was taken to heart by Bisbee at large for his gracious sharing of stories and his kind generosity. .
Moose’s Hotdogs, a vendor since the inaugural tournament in 2010, served their premier sausages and hotdogs. When in Sierra Vista, look for the bright yellow and blue umbrella outside of Lowes for a tasty, inexpensive lunch. Jimmy’s Hotdogs, a local favorite, sold delicious burgers. Stop by the bright yellow building with the hotdog on the roof across from Safeway for a savory lunch (their spaghetti is the best).
Bisbee Unified School District was great to work with. Roy Lopez always a pleasure to work with opened and closed the field and kept the restrooms clean and supplied.
A tip of our baseball caps goes to our volunteers who provided security, sold tickets, beer and raffle tickets. Thanks to our generous sponsors: Bisbee Royale, Freeport McMoran, the Copper Queen Hospital, Highway 92 Auto Services, Wick Communications, Bisbee Realty, Acacia Arts and Antiques, the Community Montessori School, High Desert Market, the Bob Butler Family, Plaza Liquor and Sierra Vista Rotary. As always, we thank our sponsoring organization, the Bisbee Council on the Arts and Humanities.
This column of appreciation would be much longer if all were named but thank you so much. The funds raised will fund our next project, construction of accessible public restrooms.