2013 Summary

At the start of its inaugural season, Experience Baseball began a process to answer the question, “How can baseball aid urban community development?”

The goal of the 2013 season was to perform a small number of pilot events in two American cities home to pro baseball.

Learning from these events, Experience Baseball would come define its long-term impact on urban community development (What is Community Development?) in three ways:

  • To provide a quality educational experience for baseball fans
  • To support local Community Development Corporations (CDCs) in urban neighborhoods
  • To develop thoughtful young professionals and future leaders within the baseball and sports industries

Experience Baseball completed two pilot events in 2013: In Kansas City on June 25th and in Chicago (White Sox) on July 2nd. Participants included area youth, casual baseball fans, baseball industry personnel, and community leaders.

kauffman stadium in kansas city

View from the seats at Experience Baseball’s inaugural event in Kansas City in June 2013

Kansas City

Experience Baseball began its pilot season in Kansas City with an event for 50 baseball fans and included a 45-minute keynote address, “The History of the Negro Leagues in Kansas City” by Dr. Raymond Doswell; an outdoor tailgate; and game tickets to the Royals vs. Atlanta Braves on June 25th.

The tailgate dinner was catered locally by Gates BBQ.

Chicago

Experience Baseball completed its second pilot event a week later on July 2nd in Chicago with an event for 50 baseball fans.

Chicago baseball historian Steven Riess presented a history of the integration period of Chicago’s two MLB teams, the White Sox and the Cubs. Following Dr. Riess’ presentation, a 30 minute documentary, Buck O’Neil and Black Baseball in Chicago, was featured. The film was commissioned, produced, and generously screened for us by the Chicago Baseball Museum.

Following the film, LaVonté Stewart, founder and president of Lost Boyz, Inc., presented a short introduction to his incredible organization.

This event was designed to support the efforts of Experience Baseball’s Chicago community partner, Lost Boyz, Inc.

The tailgate dinner was catered locally by Uncle John’s BBQ.

Additional 2013 Activities

To further the development of its student volunteers, Experience Baseball was represented at the at the Athletes and Social Change Conference in Louisville, KY in March, as well as at the MLB Diversity Business Summit in Houston, TX in June.

social change, Experience Baseball

Members of the Athletes and Social Change conference at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, KY in March 2013