This year, Chathamites are coordinating a once-in-a-lifetime summer celebration -- almost a full month before the town 's iconic Fourth of July festivities.
On June 11, the town of Chatham turns 300 years old.
To commemorate Chatham' s tricentennial, and to inaugurate the 2012 Cape Cod Baseball League season, the Chatham Athletic Association has organized a Founders Day Game, a preseason contest for the Anglers against the U.S. Military All-Stars on June 11. A special presentation at 6 p.m. will be followed by the first pitch at 6:05.
Who: Chatham Anglers & U.S. Military All-Stars
What: Founders Day Game (exhibition)
Where: Veterans Field, Chatham, MA
When: Monday, June 11, 6 p.m.
Why: Celebrate Chatham's 300th Birthday
"It is an honor that our team can play a part in recognizing Chatham's long and storied past," said Chatham manager John Schiffner.
The Chatham Town Band (locally famous for its Friday evening concerts at Whit Tileston Band Stand in Kate Gould Park) will be on hand performing patriotic songs between innings, and planned fireworks will entertain fans following the final out. After the action on the diamond, fans are invited to the Red Nun Bar & Grill (located adjacent to the third-base parking lot) for a post-game barbecue.
In addition, the CAA has unveiled a commemorative logo for the 2012 season, highlighting four noteworthy milestones: John Schiffner's 20th season as Chatham Field Manager, the Chatham Athletic Association's 50th year of operation, Veterans Field's 90th summer of hosting baseball games, and Chatham's tricentennial. The logo will be seen as a patch stitched to Chatham uniforms and on a range of apparel and merchandise available at the Veterans Field team store. Both the merchandise booth and concession stand will be open during the Founders Day Game.
The Founders Day Game is one of many events throughout the year orchestrated by Chatham 300, a non-profit, all-volunteer organization from the Chatham community. The June 11 pinnacle, Founders Day, features a full slate of activities commencing at 9 a.m. outside the Chatham Community Center. At 9:30, Chatham founding families lead a procession down Old Main Street, and following a variety of speakers and performances, the town' s church bells will be rung 300 times at 12:10 p.m. At 3 p.m. a hand-made time capsule from the town' s 250th birthday will be unsealed. A full schedule of Founders Day and Founders Weekend events can be found here.
The U.S. Military All-Stars team, which first visited Cape Cod in 2005, is comprised of active duty, reserve, Veterans, Delayed Entry Program and First Responders. " As I understand it, many of those guys can get a call to duty during the game, " said Schiffner. The team's annual "Red, White and Blue Tour" includes four stops in Massachusetts over three days, capped by a Fenway Park event June 12. The U.S. Military All-Stars last played at Chatham's Veterans Field in 2007.
Schiffner, the winningest manager in Cape Cod League history, expects that his preseason roster could be limited on June 11, given the number of college baseball teams potentially in the NCAA tournament. To that end, the exhibition will likely conclude after seven innings.
Chatham's first regular season game takes place three days later, June 14 at Wareham, and the first regular-season home game is June 15 vs. Cotuit at 7 p.m. | FULL SCHEDULE
For more information, please email ChathamBroadcast@gmail.com.