ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A pre-game ceremony that showcases “Cardinal Nation,” honors the team’s Hall of Famers, pays tribute to Stan Musial on receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom and includes a first pitch by Cardinals retired center fielder Jim Edmonds will punctuate a day of activities celebrating the annual return of baseball to St. Louis on Thursday, March 31st. The Cardinals will take on the San Diego Padres in a 3:15 p.m. game.
Fans can tune into KMOX 1120 AM or one of the 117 stations in the Cardinals Radio Network to hear Mike Shannon & John Rooney call the game. The expanded pre-game show starts at 1:30pm on opening day. Shannon is celebrating his 40th season and John Rooney is celebrating his 6th season behind the microphone for the Cardinals.
“We Are Cardinal Nation” is the theme of the 2011 season and the focus of the home opener this year.
Schedule of Events Around Town:
10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. - Y98/Fresh 102.5 Opening Day Rally, sponsored by PNC Bank
Y98 and PNC Bank bring you the Opening Day Rally 2011 at Kiener Plaza. Stop by before the big opening day game, Thursday March 31st from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be live music from My Friend Mike, games, giveaways, plenty of drinks and a whole lot of rooting for the home team. Get autographs from former players Mike Matheny and John Mabry from 11 a.m. till noon at the PNC Bank Tent.
11:00 a.m. – 2 p.m. – Cardinals Official Opening Day Pre-Game Pep Rally, sponsored by Hardee’s
The Cardinals will host a pre-game pep rally located in the Ballpark Village Lot, located directly across from Busch Stadium, at the corner of Clark Street and South Broadway. Local 80s cover band Trixie Delight will perform from 11.30 a.m. to 1.30 p.m.
Cardinals Alumni, Danny Cox and John Mabry, will be signing autographs and Fredbird and Team Fredbird will be on hand to give away Opening Day tickets, autographed items and other Cardinals prizes. For more information, visit cardinals.com/peprally.
1:15 p.m. – Gates open
Busch Magnet Schedule Day: All fans ages 21 and over will receive a magnet with the 2011 Cardinals schedule, compliments of Busch Beer.
- Pre-game ceremonies begin with an appearance by the famed Budweiser Clydesdales. Nine-year-old Alex will fulfill a wish thanks to Cardinals Care and the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Missouri by riding with the Budweiser team throughout the festivities.
- Introduce Missouri Governor Jeremiah “Jay” Nixon, St. Louis County Executive Charlie A. Dooley and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay
- Cardinals Hall-of-Famers and the 2011 Cardinals will be introduced via a Ford Motorcade around the warning track.
- Introduce former Cardinals Players Andy Benes, Scott Cooper, Tom Henke, TJ Mathews, Kerry Robinson, Ted Savage and Mike Shannon.
- American Bald Eagle flight, courtesy of the World Bird Sanctuary of St. Louis
- Color Guard – The U.S. Army St. Louis Recruiting Company
- A moment of silence for the victims of the earthquake in Japan and Pacific tsunami.
- A moment of silence to former Cardinals hitting coach Mitchell Page, former Cardinals shortstop Marty Marion and former Cardinals owner Andrew Baur.
- Nikko Smith, singer-songwriter and star of American Idol, will sing the Star-Spangled Banner.
- U.S. Marine Corps Flyover – C-130 Transports
- Ceremonial First Pitch – Jim Edmonds
3:15 p.m. – Game Time