There’s nothing better than a perfect evening at the ballpark. Balmy summer-like weather, enthusiasm for your home team – in this case the Cleveland Indians — and then, the opportunity to meet a family beaming over a baseball experience of a lifetime.
That just scratches the surface of the experience prize won by David Plant and shared with his wife Caroline, their son Jeffrey and mother-in-law Wanda at a recent home game between the Cleveland Indians and Kansas City Royals.
David, you see, was the Ohio Lottery/Cleveland Indians VIP Experience winner.
David really has his mother-in-law to thank. She’s a huge baseball fan who’s come to watch the Cleveland Indians since she was “yay high,” she says. She knew David was an Ohio Lottery fan, so at another game this season (in which she took her grandson Jeffrey) she dropped one of David’s $5 non-winning instant tickets into the drawing. It was also Wanda’s 75th birthday. She told me she couldn’t think of a better birthday gift than winning this prize for David.
The evening started well enough with four club seats and all you can eat at the Club Lounge at Progressive Field for David and his family. It got even better. David and his family spent an inning in the Indians radio booth and met Tribe broadcasters Tom Hamilton, Mike Hegan and Jim Rosenhaus.
Then, after watching a few innings — including one in which Jim Thome hit his first home run as a Cleveland Indian again – David started warming up to “steal second” at the end of the fifth inning. He told me he was looking forward to running out in the field to literally grab second base and take it home as a souvenir. He worried that he wouldn’t be in good enough shape to trot down and back on the field. He did a fine job.
Then, David and his family spent an inning in a special suite with former Cleveland Indians coach and Indians Hall of Fame player, Mike Hargrove. Mike Hargrove was a gracious host to David and his family. Wouldn’t you know, he and Wanda had a great Tribe conversation and plan to talk again at a future date.
Did I mention the Tribe won?
If you had to work a Saturday evening like me, it just doesn’t get any better than this.
Whatever you do this holiday weekend, be safe and make it special.
By Marie Kilbane-Seckers