Wanted: Baseball memorabilia and memories — Ballpark designers hosting free gathering Saturday for the public

The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals are inviting the public to sit down with them Saturday to share their personal stories about baseball in West Palm Beach as part of the planning for the teams’ new spring training complex.

Baseball legend Connie Mack was a West Palm Beach fixture
Baseball legend Connie Mack was a West Palm Beach fixture

Artist Blessing Hancock will be among the teams’ representatives who will help co-host the two-hour gathering on Saturday at the Johnson History Museum located in the historic 1916 Palm Beach County courthouse, 300 Dixie Highway in downtown West Palm Beach.

From 10 a.m. to noon, members of the public are encouraged to bring local baseball memorabilia – from ticket stubs and programs to uniforms and photographs – and share any stories they have of interacting with players in West Palm Beach.

Organizers hope the stories and memorabilia will serve two purposes – to influence the design the new ballpark’s art and architecture and be part of a special exhibition about the history of baseball in Palm Beach County.

The museum exhibition would coincide with the scheduled opening of The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in January 2017.

Blessing Hancock (photo courtesy University of Texas at San Antonio)
Blessing Hancock (photo courtesy University of Texas at San Antonio)

Also co-hosting the event are the Historical Society of Palm Beach County, the Palm Beach County Art in Public Places program.

For more information call curator Debi Murray at 561-832-4164 ext. 105 or email her at dmurray@historicalsocietypbc.org

If you cannot attend the event, but would like to share your stories and/or memorabilia please contact dmurray@historicalsocietypbc.org.

A Sandy Koufax for a Bob Weisman? Baseball cards of key players in West Palm spring training project

To help illustrate our story on how politicians and community leaders worked behind the scenes with the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals to bring spring training back to West Palm Beach, we could have used simple portraits of the key players.

But Gurman Bhatia, the Post’s data intern, had a better idea: Baseball cards.

She looked over some of the classic styles from Topps Baseball Cards over the past 60 years for inspiration.

They might not be worth trading for a rookie Mickey Mantle card, but she sure had fun making them!

Check out the complete set here. A brief preview follows below:

 

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Houston Astros owner Jim Crane’s baseball card suggests the 1953 style.

 

 

 

 

 

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Washington Nationals general partner Art Fuccillo got a card that brings back memories of the 1954 style.

 

 

 

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The card for former Palm Beach County Administrator Bob Weisman suggests the 1962 style.

 

 

 

 

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Palm Beach Gardens City Manager Ron Ferris’ card invokes memories of the 1980 style.

 

 

 

 

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Bhatia, who is from India, knows more about cricket than baseball. But she learned enough about baseball cards to make her own in the style of the 1972 set.