Those Friday Nights at Memorial Stadium

Growing up as a youngster in Baltimore, I was an avid sports fan and like many of the kids in my neighborhood, lived and died by what happened with the local teams; the Baltimore Colts and Baltimore Orioles. One of my favorite things to look forward to was a trip to Memorial Stadium on a Friday evening. I would jump on that number 3 bus up at Wilkens Avenue and Brunswick and take that long ride to 33rd Street. I remember how the excitement would build as the bus finally made the turn onto 33rd Street. It seemed that the bus would never get to the stadium as the people walking along the streets would be making better time than the bus.

But what was really the ‘bomb’ was a Friday Night Doubleheader where you got to see two games for the price of one. Sitting there watching players like Brooks and Frank Robinson, Boog Powell, Jim Palmer, and the rest of the players do their thing was nirvana for a young kid like myself. And the thing is, the Orioles had some great teams back then. They were exciting to watch. and always seemed to be in the playoffs.

Looking back, I know I couldn’t have been more than 8 or 9 when I first started going to the stadium, and I almost always went by myself, but there was never any worry from my parents about anything happening to me along the way. Back then, the price of a bleacher seat ticket at Memorial Stadium in the 60’s was so cheap that even a poor family like ours could afford to let their kid go see a game now and again.

Yea, things have certainly changed in the world of professional sports today! Not only are the games out of reach price wise for most working class families, but the team itself is barely more than a Triple A farm team. And those concessions? $7 for a beer and $6 for a dog! Quite a difference from the 25 cent ‘K’ corn that you could get at Memorial Stadium!

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