The Saint Louis Cardinals welcome not only the Chicago Cubs for their series this weekend, they also will play host to the Jacksonville community for a game today at 1:15pm. CNB Bank and Trust has sponsored the event for three years, and it has been a wonderful, growing success every year.
Shelly Singleton is the Director of Marketing at the CNB Jacksonville Branch.
Singleton talks about the various youth baseball groups that CNB is supporting through this event, and the privileges offered by Busch Stadium on the condition of certain ticket sales.
“This year, we helped JHS sell their tickets because every year they sell tickets to a game so they can reach their goal of raising enough money to go down and play an exhibition game down at Busch Stadium. They’ll play another high school, not the same game, obviously, but at a different time they will play another high school. But it’s fun for the JHS kids because they get to go up on the big Jumbotron and they get to be in the dugout and they get to go on the field. So they had some extra tickets that they were having trouble selling, so they gave them to CNB and we went ahead and sold an extra 150-200 of their tickets. Bottom line is, everybody sold all their tickets. We’ll be able to give a nice check, a nice donation, to Jacksonville Area Baseball and Pony Colt and then all the kids at JHS will have a chance to go down on the field, which is why they sell their tickets. They have to earn that right.”
The honor of throwing out the first pitch for a selected Jacksonvillager at Busch Stadium is also earned through ticket sales. Mayor Andy Ezard threw out the first pitch 2 years ago.
“Having a first pitch is an earned thing. So, we have to sell at least 750 or a thousand tickets to have the right to throw in the first pitch. You know, it was a gamble our first year, and I talked to Andy Ezard, and I said, ‘Let’s do this. Let’s do this for Jacksonville.’ and Andy said, ‘Alright, let’s do it.’ And so the bank… It was fortunate enough that the bank believed in our marketing team that we could pull it off and actually sell a thousand tickets.”
Singleton hopes that, after all the money is collected for donations, CNB will be able to offer upwards of five thousand dollars to Jacksonville Area Baseball and the Pony Colt.
You can hear the live broadcast of the game on both of our affiliated stations, at 12:20 pm on WEAI 107.1 FM via the Cardinals Radio Network, or at 12:40 pm tune in to the Chicago Cubs Radio Network on WLDS 1180 AM.