The Cincinnati Reds hosted their fans for two fun-filled days to get ready for the 2017 season.
The Cincinnati Reds once again held their annual Redsfest at the Duke Energy Convention Center. Memorabilia sales is always a highlight. Redsfest also included opportunities for fans to get autographs from their favorite players. They also had booths for pictures. Improving catcher Tucker Barnhart was one of the players that was made available at both booths.
Barnhart and All-Star Adam Duvall showed off the wiffle ball area. They came in on the preview day for the media. The layout was designed so that children could easily go between wiffle ball and the interactive sections easily. The activities for the younger children was set-up on its own level. The memorabilia area also had its own level.
The Reds had different type of autograph sessions for different types of fans. They had general public, season-ticket holders, and kids-only sessions. Each session had a limit of 225 autographs.
The Reds used an interesting way to announce the autograph sessions. Half an hour before the start of each session, they announced the names. They would be added to the list of events on the televisions around the convention center. You could also sign-up to receive text messages about the autograph sessions.
The photograph booths had different access and different styles. Unlike the autographs sessions, the photo booths had a time limit, not a count. Also, depending on the booth, you may have had to use your cell phone to take the picture.
Perhaps the favorite two activities at Redsfest were the bingo and poker tables. The bingo game was a raffle. Essentially, every game had a prize of some sort for the winner. The poker game let you hangout with current and former players. Each table had one of them playing poker.
There is more to Redsfest than just being able to interact with the Cincinnati Reds.
The best part of Redsfest is that it supports baseball outreach programs. The Reds Community Fund organizes these programs. As an added event, the Reds had a season-ticket holder session with World Series manager, Lou Piniella. It was a special event on Wednesday. That event drew 900 fans.
The Reds Community Fund has been active since 2001. It’s core program is Field Renovations. Field Renovations is famous for its co-ordination with Greater Cincinnati RBI. It has helped restore more than 350 baseball and softball fields.
Perhaps the largest on-going program is the P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy. The Academy provides academic and vocational support for its members. It also runs year round baseball and softball instruction.
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Reds Rookie Success League is a program that not too many people are aware of. It is a free co-ed program for 6-13 year olds that teaches character building. It is available to youths in Cincinnati, Dayton, and Louisville. The League is also available as well in Butler and Clermont counties in Ohio.