Posted by Rod Buffington
Thanks to the Rotarians who attended the annual "Rotary Family Day at the Ballpark" on Sunday, October 3 (image to left). It was also a celebration for Mike Shannon as he ended his 50 years of being a player, an administrator, and most of all his career as the Cardinals lead announcer for KMOX.  As Rotary baseball coordinator, I had the privilege of three interviews with Mike about Rotary Days at the Ballpark. For the October 3 event, Bill Smith and I were field guests of the Cardinals along with Past District Governor Maura Donnelly (image above) who nailed throwing out the first pitch. Ross Hodel captured the image below of her getting advice prior to her perfect pitch. 
The Cubs won this game although it was shortened by three different rain stoppages. We all had exercise climbing up and down the steps from the second row of seats in Section 232. Congratulation to the Cardinals and their fans for the team playing on Wednesday, October 6 in the MLB playoffs. I tried to sell more tickets to the October 3 game by predicting that the Cardinals would have a great August run. Nobody throughout our Rotary District took the bait, therefore we had lower sales of tickets for Rotary Family Day than in previous years. Next year, we will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of Rotary Day at the games in St. Louis, therefore hopefully many tickets will be sold for the game. Over $520,000 has been raised to support literacy in our Rotary Districts in Central and Southern Illinois over the years through ticket sales for the Rotary Family Day games.