BALTIMORE (WJZ)– The Orioles are celebrating Oriole Park at Camden Yards 25th anniversary Friday and Saturday.
The celebration began Friday with former players from the 1992 team, who reflected on their experience and will continue with them taking over the field once again Saturday evening.
“When this ballpark was built it was the first of its kind being placed in an urban downtown setting and being used as a beacon for tourism,” said Orioles VP of communications Greg Bader.
“My first memory of it really was coming over the bridge and Johnny had the buses stopped, so we could all take a look, basically at history cause this was the first wave of stadiums lit up the way it was absolutely beautiful,” said Mark McLemore from the 1992 team.
“Back then we were a tight unit team, guys weren’t on their cell phones 24/7 we talked to each other in the club house,” Joe Orsulak said.
Oriole Park at Camden Yards transformed the fan experience, it consistently ranks number one across the country for visitors and returning players.
“We knew everyday we played here we were coming to play in front of a full crowd,” Mike Devereaux said.
The loyal crowd is also a big part of the team.
“When you’re tired and you got in late at night and sometime you need that excitement and boost when you get out on the field to get you going we were always lucky to have a packed house and unique great ballpark,” Cal Ripken Jr. said.
“I’ve never seen my wife get so excited to get an invitation to anything as she was this one she said that ballpark was built for the fan she goes the seats are bigger all the seats are angled toward the field, not looking here or there,” Rick Sutcliff said.
“It’s something that is a source of pride for the state and the citizens so we are hopeful 25 years from now we are celebrating the 50th anniversary,” Bader said.
There will be special anniversary giveaways for Friday’s and Saturday’s games as well as a fireworks show Friday.
Saturday the pregame ceremony begins at 6 p.m. with a home run derby contest.