It was July 29th, Austin’s 18th birthday. What better way to celebrate it than with a tour of Fenway Park?
The electricity of the previous night had since dwindled, the empty chairs that had been holding bodies for many years eagerly awaiting the next group of fans. We started here, listening intently as the tour guide unfolded the rich history of Boston’s beloved ballpark.
The Green Monster, standing more than thirty seven feet tall, is an iconic figure in the ballpark. The story goes that John I Taylor purchased land to build a ballpark for the Red Sox in the middle of the Fenway neighborhood of Boston. In order to keep balls from constantly flying out of the ballpark and into nearby homes, and to keep the cheapskates from watching the game from outside the park, he built “The Wall”. Actually not painted green until 1947, when it received its new namesake, it was covered with advertisements from local businesses. The manual scoreboard has been in place since 1934, and is one of a very few still in operation.
Fenway has the smallest dimensions of any major league baseball facility. What that means for the fan is that, even when sitting in the “cheap seats”, he is never really that far away from the action!
At least Fenway can boast the largest press box in the major leagues!
With three rows of seating, it can hold around fifty journalists for each game.
There are many interesting stories about Fenway. One in particular has to do with the single red seat located in the right field stands. It stands in recognition of the longest home run hit in the park It happened on June 9, 1946, the batter was the legendary Ted Williams. Williams slugged one 502 feet that night, hitting 56 year old Joe Boucher and knocking a hole in his straw hat! The seat was painted red and commemorated in 1984. It can be found in Section 42, Row 37, Seat 21.
The tour lasted about an hour, our guide delivering a wealth of information. Did the Fenway Park experience influence our kids to consider the possibility of becoming die-hard Red Sox Fans? The jury is still out on that question. However, there is no doubt that these events did give them a greater appreciation for the great American past time!