O's focus on young fans


As another baseball opening day dawns, inquiring kids want to know. What's in it for me at Oriole Park, besides a ballgame, that is?

Well, youngsters, there's the Kids' Corner, directly inside Gate C. It's open during every game and features the Bird Bounce, speed pitch, photo cutouts and a food stand that sells a "kid-size" pretzel for $2 and "megaphone" popcorn for $1.

Want to bring Mom, Dad and baby brother to the ballpark with you? Families can purchase a MasterCard Grand Slam Ticket Pack for any Monday or Wednesday game (excluding opening day). The $44 fee includes four tickets (left field lower box seats normally priced at $20 each) four Orioles hats and one copy of Orioles magazine. The ticket pack must be charged on a MasterCard.

Want to join the Junior Orioles Dugout Club? If you're 14 and under, you can sign up and get tickets for up to 10 home games, a hat, a baseball and more for $15.

OK, so what freebies do kids get this season? How about an O's magnet schedule (April 4; all fans); an Orioles cap (Aug. 1) and a Jay Gibbons T-shirt (Aug. 7)? And the adults will be green with envy when kids get to run the bases after games on May 3 (Dugout Clubs Kids), June 19 and July 2.

The opening-day game vs. Cleveland (Monday) is sold out, but at press time, tickets were still available for the rest of the first home stand. The schedule looks like this: The O's play Cleveland again on Wednesday and Thursday at 7:05 p.m., then it's Boston at 7:05 p.m. Friday and 1:35 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets range from $8 to $45 and are available at the ballpark, at official team stores, by phone (888-848-BIRD) and at www.theorioles.com and www.ticketmas ter.com.

Play ball!

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