BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — If you’re itching to take you and your family or friends out to the ballgame you’ve got plenty of options this weekend.
Birmingham sports are full steam ahead with everything from baseball to football and even some hockey action.
USFL kicks off its season opener with reigning champions, the Birmingham Stallions, on Saturday and the New Orleans Breakers on Sunday.
The Birmingham Bulls will take to the ice rink this weekend competing in the President’s Cup, and the world of baseball is celebrating big this Saturday for Jackie Robinson day.
The Birmingham Barons general manager Jonathan Nelson tells me they have big plans all weekend long with Jackie Robinson day in the spotlight on Saturday.
Nelson said Robinson was not only an incredible athlete but an amazing man who did so much for the country and game of baseball.
He says players will be decked out in number 42 jerseys to honor Robinson. Saturday is also CBS 42 night at Regions Field where you’ll see some of our very own throughout the evening throwing the first pitch and singing ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game.’
Nelson said highlighting their longtime partnership with CBS 42 while honoring number 42 goes hand in hand.
“It’s a perfect marriage and especially a way to cap off the opening homestand,” said Nelson. “You know, when you open a new season there’s so much excitement and genuine enthusiasm for the season, but yet when you finish it off on a weekend and then celebrating the life and legacy of Jackie Robinson, it’s a perfect ending to continue with the season,”
You can catch the Barons at Regions Field Friday, Saturday and Sunday taking on the Rocket City Trash Pandas.
Alongside the Barons, the Negro Southern League Museum has a fun celebration planned. Frank Adams with NSLM tells me they will be hosting their annual Jackie Robinson Day Street Festival.
The event is something he said is a fun and welcoming way for the community to enjoy the museum while honoring Robinson and his legacy that still lives with us today.
Adams said Robinson not only broke barriers and overcame obstacles as an athlete, but also as a businessman and community leader.
“He was also someone that found time to give to people who really just wanted to know him, who wanted to connect with his greatness and share that and inspire the next generation and so that’s why we think he’s so wonderful to celebrate every year and we look forward to this Saturday.”
Adams said the street festival will take place from 11a.m. to 2p.m. on Saturday.
With the USFL season opener kicking off tomorrow, sports commentator and NFL hall of famer Howie Long told CBS 42 that Birmingham is a city that shows up, and it couldn’t be a more exciting time for the players and coaches.
He said the USFL is a league of great opportunity all around for players, coaches and officials. Long also said USFL innovations are drawing more fans to the TV set and the field.
“It’s a very fan friendly league,” said Long. “The access to the field for kids and, you know, the way they cover the game. They have cameras in the huddle, coaches are mic’d up. You hear everything, you see everything, you have the ability to go for one, two, or three after a touchdown.”
A Birmingham Stallions representative told CBS 42 ticket sales are going well, but that there are still plenty of seats left for those who want to join in on the football fun.