Fenway Park, America's most beloved ballpark will turn 100 this April, and the Red Sox are making sure that this season will be remembered by fans young and old.
The team has announced many events and programs it will hold to honor the historic ballpark that has held not only baseball games, but also football, soccer and hockey games as well as concerts and more.
"It is with great anticipation that we announce the events for Fenway Park's 100th Anniversary celebration," said principal owner John Henry. "As we embark on the next century of baseball in one of the great cathedrals of sport, we look forward to joining with our fans to celebrate the rich history and character of this ballpark. We have a saying around here that I’m particularly fond of, and I think it is very well-suited for this special occasion – 'Fenway Park: It never gets old'."
"The promise to preserve Fenway Park, a commitment we made more than ten years ago when our ownership group assumed stewardship of this franchise, was made in recognition of what a living shrine to history this ballpark is for so many in Red Sox Nation," said Chairman Tom Werner. "As we prepare to celebrate this centennial with our fans and neighbors, we look forward to commemorating our great home by preserving its artifacts and rich history so that it can be shared with generations to come."
The Red Sox will be extending invitations to fans even when the team is on the road. On Apr. 19, fans will be allowed access to an open house event where they can see historical artifacts and memorabilia, as well as meet various Sox legends. Areas of the park that visitors do not get to see such as the Sox' dugout and clubhouse will be open for walkthroughs.
When the team is in town, select games will be Throwback Uniform Days, the first of which is scheduled for May 2 against the Oakland Athletics. Both teams will wear uniforms from 1936. Tickets to that game and the rest of the Red Sox home games will be commemorative tickets that focus on Fenway Park circa 1912, the first year the Sox called it home.
On Dec. 8, the Red Sox and Major League Baseball released a 256-page coffee table book Fenway Park: 100 Years, with a foreword by Stephen King and contributions from Fenway Park admirers Conan O'Brien, Charles Ogletree and Bobby Orr.
As a keystone event, the Red Sox will conduct "100 Acts of Kindness" with various non-profit organizations around New England including donations, volunteer efforts and hosting community programs. This event was kicked off Thursday when the team donated copies of their commemorative book to 18 Boston Public Library branches and 125 Boston Public schools.
The next acts will be done on Dec. 12 with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families, Dec. 13 with New Horizons for New Hampshire, Dec. 14 with Children's Hospital at Maine Medical Center, Dec. 15 with the Bridgeport, Conn. Rescue Mission, Dec. 16 with the Committee for Temporary Shelter in Burlington, Vt. and Dec. 19 with Meals on Wheels of Rhode Island.
In an effort to engage more fans outside the park, fan contests will be held with online voting for the All-Fenway Team, a Favorite Personal Fenway Park Moment contest and Mayor Thomas Menino's Fenway Park 100 Essay Contest.
"Fenway Park is a jewel of this city and a second home to Red Sox fans," said President/CEO Larry Lucchino. "Fenway's important history and key role require that we celebrate this historic anniversary with great enthusiasm and pride, and we shall."
For more information on Fenway Park, visit Fenway Park 100.