There’s No Crying in Baseball, or Rockford, IL, as City Rings in 75th Anniversary of the Rockford Peaches - Celebrate the anniversary of the team made famous  in “A League of Their Own,” May 30 – June 3

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 30, 2018


ROCKFORD, ILLINOIS – This week kicks off a multi-day series of events to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Rockford Peaches, the team made famous in the movie, “A League of Their Own,” and bring attention to the historic significance of women’s baseball.

 

The family-friendly anniversary events are organized by the International Women’s Baseball Center (IWBC) in partnership with the Friends of Beyer Stadium. The celebration marks the beginning of a capital campaign to build a $7 million IWBC educational center and museum next to Beyer Stadium, located at 245 15th Avenue, Rockford, where the Rockford Peaches played from 1943-1954.

 

The events begin on Wednesday, May 30 – the 75th anniversary to the day of the first All-American Girls Professional Baseball League games that took place in Rockford and Racine, Wisc. The Rockford Peaches was one of only two teams that played in every season of the league and holds the distinction of having won more league championships than any other team (winning four times, in 1945, 1948, 1949 and 1950).

 

“We’re thrilled about the momentous celebration to honor the legacy of the Rockford Peaches, raise funds to support the creation of the IWBC educational center, and further cement Rockford as the international home of women’s baseball,” said Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara. “Batters, do you hear that call? Rockford’s celebrating the Peaches and all are welcome to join in on the fun.”

 

The Rockford Peaches team was one of the first four teams in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, which formed in 1943 when many baseball players were away during World War II. All events are free except the May 30 event at the Coronado and fees for participating in the Sunday, June 3 home run derby.

 

SCHEDULED EVENTS INCLUDE:

 

Wednesday, May 30 

  • “Diamonds, Denim and Stars” - 6 - 9 p.m. @ Coronado Theatre (media interview opportunities will begin at 5:30 p.m.)
  • A star from “A League of Their Own” (Megan Cavanagh) will join entertainers and reenactors in a "1940s Rockford Peaches baseball game-themed" evening of family fun. The Women’s Baseball World Cup Trophy Tour also kicks off here as it makes its way to Viera, Fla., for the August event, and Ila Borders, the first woman to start in a men’s professional baseball game, along with other officials from the World Baseball Softball Confederation, will attend.
  • Tickets start at $25 in advance for adults; $10 for children under 12; and children under 6 are free.
     

Thursday, May 31

  • FREE Meet a Peach Autograph Signing Event – 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Rockford Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (102 North Main Street, Rockford)
  • Get an autograph and hang out with original members of the Rockford Peaches, and Megan Cavanagh one of the actresses from “A League of Their Own” who depicted the Rockford Peaches and other special guests.

 

Friday, June 1 

  • FREE Rockford Peaches Day at Rockford City Market - 3:30 - 8:30 p.m. @ Rockford City Market 
    Original AAGPBL players will greet the crowd from the stage. Look for the International Women's Baseball Center (IWBC) in the Kids' Activity Area with hands-on "Baseball in the STEAM Zone" activities presented by Discovery Center interns.

 

  • FREE Rockford Peaches Day on State - 3:30 - 8:30 p.m. @ Downtown Rockford
    Participating shops, restaurants and bars along East State Street next to City Market will feature specialty drinks and dishes and themed items for sale to celebrate Rockford Peaches Day.

 

  • FREE “A League of Their Own” at Friday Night Flix - Dusk - 9:30 p.m. @ Davis Park 
    A stars from “A League of Their Own” will greet moviegoers at Davis Park and sign autographs at a booth before the showing of this iconic American baseball movie. Rockford Dance Company Rockettes in Rockford Peaches uniforms will entertain the crowds. Free Rockford Peach pennants will be given out to every child in attendance.

 

Saturday, June 2 

  • FREE “Baseball in the STEAM Zone” Family Day -  9 a.m.-Noon @ Beyer Stadium 
    The whole family can experience a morning of hands-on stations on the field that will connect baseball and sports to STEAM subjects -- Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math -- plus History and Nature and Sports, in a fun learning environment.

 

  • FREE Opening Ceremony and Exhibition Game - 1-5 p.m. @ Beyer Stadium
    The International Women's Baseball Center (IWBC) will hold an official Opening Ceremony for the Rockford Peaches 75th Anniversary Bicentennial Celebration with the East High School band, and Mayor Tom McNamara throwing out the first pitch. Stars from “A League of Their Own” will team up with 75th Anniversary Celebration sponsors and community leaders on a Celebrity Team against the Rockford Starfires Women's Baseball Team.

 

Sunday, June 3 

  • Home Run Derby and Closing Ceremony 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. @ Beyer Stadium
    Free to Attend; Fee to Participate (T-ball to adult 50+)
  • Children (T-ball) to adult (50+) paid entries will vie for "star" in various age categories. The day concludes with the first-ever competition pitting Firefighters vs. Policemen in a friendly rivalry at the plate.
  • All entries receive a Certificate of Participation. Trophies and medallions will be awarded at the Closing Ceremony of the Rockford Peaches 75th Anniversary Celebration.

 

Additionally, for those who cannot visit this weekend – or simply have extra time after participating in all of the above activities - Rockford offers a fun-filled itinerary for baseball enthusiasts at any time. Check out the Midway Village Museum’s permanent Rockford Peaches exhibit, “The Girls of Summer,” which tells the story of the Peaches and their place in the AAGPBL.

 

Then, take yourself on the great Midwest baseball tour, traveling through the hills of Northwest Illinois and Iowa to experience three baseball attractions, visiting Beyer Stadium in Rockford, IL; Little Cubs Field in Freeport, IL; and Field of Dreams in Dyersville, IA. Stop at any of the three locations to pick up your baseball “passport” today.

For information about each field's activities:

Little Cubs Field - (800) 369-2955 - littlecubsfield.com
Beyer Stadium - Rockford Area CVB: (815) 963-8111 - Facebook, Friends of Beyer Stadium
Field of Dreams - (563) 875-8404 - fieldofdreamsmoviesite.com

 

For more information and full details on the 75th Anniversary Rockford Peaches events, please visit www.gorockford.com.

 

At IWBC, education is the cornerstone of the mission to protect, preserve and promote all aspects of women’s baseball, both on and off the field. We strive to inspire the next generation of players by helping them realize their dreams not only of participating in the sport, but also of passing on all they will learn and achieve for generations to come.

 

The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau is the region’s destination marketing organization. Travel ideas, itineraries and tips can be found at www.gorockford.com.

 

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FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Andrea Cook, Associate Director of Marketing & Communications: 815.489.1664 or acook@gorockford.com

John Groh, President/CEO: 815.489.1656 or jgroh@gorockford.com