Last night, I was invited to tour Fenway and have dinner in the State Street Pavilion. I asked my friend Brad along, as he is a Red Sox fanatic. We were on the first tour group of the evening, and our tour guides was Amy.
The tour was actually quite interesting, as there was a lot about Fenway that I didn’t know mentioned on the tour. For instance, Fenway has the oldest and narrowest seats of any major league stadium. These are the blue wooden seats on the grandstands, and they go back to the mid-1930s or so. Fenway is also the oldest of any major league stadium, and opened in April of 1912.
The Green Monster was added in 1934, but was originally blue and covered with advertising. In 1947, the wall was painted the famous “Fenway Green” that it is today. The color was chosen by Jean R. Yawkey, wife of the Tom Yawkey, to match the grass. Their initials are found on the scoreboard in Morse code as an in-stadium memorial to the two lifetime owners of the team.
Seating was added atop the Green Monster fairly recently. This is a view from the highly coveted Green Monster seats, which are only available through a lottery. If you’re sitting up on the Green Monster, you’d best have a glove and be paying attention. The balls hit up into the Green Monster can be going as fast as 140 MPH, and broken noses and collar bones have been the result of inattention. Today, Brad is watching a game from up on the Green Monster, a birthday gift from his wife.
In the right field bleachers is a lone red seat. It marks the location of the longest measurable home run ever hit in Fenway. The 502 foot-long home run was hit by Ted Williams on June 9, 1946. Unfortunately, it landed on a Joseph Boucher, who was a Yankee fan visiting Boston at the time on business. He converted to being a Red Sox fan after that day.
The press booth is one of the largest in the country. The booth has four rows of seats. The first two rows of seats are reserved for the Baseball Writers Association of America members, the third row is reserved for local Boston journalists, and the last row is for out-of-town media. This is a panoramic view from the booth.
The menu consisted of burgers, hot dogs, sausage, corn-on-the-cob and barbeque chicken. The desserts consisted of various types of brownies, cookies and fruit. Not a bad way to spend the evening.