[box size=”large” border=”full” icon=”none”] Why it’s awesome: It’s family friendly, inexpensive, and an overall good time watching a baseball game! The fact that it is all located in the beautiful Wuerfel park and not far from downtown Traverse City makes it a quick trip for locals and a worthwhile trip for tourists! [/box]
Sunburn and Suntan are terms that are generally associated with the beach. In this case they are the names of two bears. Confused? Don’t be. They are the beloved mascots for the Traverse City’s minor league baseball team, the Beach Bums. Sunburn is the twin brother of the other mascot “Suntan” and together they create an amusing duo for the entertainment of Beach Bum fans. The mascots are only part of the experience that the Traverse City Beach Bums has to offer fans, however.
The Bums were founded in 2005 and have only been growing in popularity since then. The mission behind the bums is: “To invite people, young and old, to visit as guests and have them leave as fans.“ According to their Facebook page, more than 782,000 fans have attended games at their home stadium, Wuerfuel Park, since their first season in 2006. “It’s great baseball and a lot of fun without costing an arm and a leg,” said Tim Broxterman, the Director of Promotions/Community Events. Alex Goldsmith, a Beach Bum employee agrees. “It’s all the fun of a MLB game but cheaper and local,” said Goldsmith.
Broxterman is a native Ohioan, but came to Traverse City to join the Maritime Academy. He became a permanent resident after experiencing the town. “Northern Michigan is beautiful. It’s clean, the crime rate is low and it’s a perfect place to raise a family,” he said. Broxterman is a huge sports fan, but for him, baseball is only half of what makes the Bums awesome. “There is a really big push on the military here. We have flags representing each branch of the Military, and Veterans and active duty military personnel receive a half price chairback ticket at every Beach Bums home game. On Military Mondays we highlight a particular branch of the military.”
Theme nights are an every day occurrence at the Beach Bum games. A few weekly themes include FUNday Sundays, FANtastic Fireworks on Fridays and of course, Military Mondays. This year’s Fourth of July event, “Welcome Home Night” for Veterans and active duty members, is predicted to be a big success. “Last year on the Fourth of July we had 6,452 people in the stadium,” Broxterman said. “Every spot was filled; every spot on the lawn and seats.” Because tickets are so inexpensive –$6.00 for lawn seats, $10.00 for chairback–it’s no wonder the stadium was packed.
The Fourth of July celebration goes hand in hand with why Broxterman deems the Bums “awesome.” “We bring Vets onto the field and last year there was a 12 minute standing ovation for them,” Broxterman said. “If it doesn’t give you chills, then I don’t know what will.” ~Eliza Foster, Managing Content Editor.
For more information about their Microbrew festival, visit their website.
BONUS! We’re giving away four tickets! Click HERE to find out how to enter!
View more pics from the Beach Bums on our Flickr page.