Spotlight on baseball: Hall of Fame gears up for 4th Annual Baseball Film Festival
By Stephen Light
Here at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, summer is our busiest time of year, as families on vacation flock to village of Cooperstown to take advantage of the beautiful weather and baseball history.
But you might argue fall is the perfect time of year to visit Cooperstown – you can take in the crisp autumn air and the beautiful tree foliage while the baseball seasons winds toward its exciting conclusion.
Fall also brings to the National Baseball Hall of Fame our annual Baseball Film Festival, held this year on the final weekend of the regular season – Oct. 2-4. If you ever doubted that baseball is woven into the cultural identity of America – not to mention dozens of other countries – then the Baseball Film Festival is an event that will open your eyes.
This year’s lineup will have you following the footsteps of former big league pitcher Luis Tiant as he returns to the streets of Havana after 46 years of exile, and the footsteps of Hall of Famer Cal Ripken Jr. as he brings America’s pastime to China as an official ambassador. It will unravel the mysterious origins of umpire signs and signals, and reveal the complex and unusual love affair between the city of Chicago and the Cubs. You can root for the WBL Sparks, the first all-girls baseball team to compete in a boys’ national tournament, and for a man struggling to make a baseball league in Israel a reality.
These are just a few of the many plot lines that will run throughout our fourth annual Baseball Film Festival as 13 films vie for three awards: The Award for Best Film, The Award for Baseball Excellence, and the Award for Excellence in Filmmaking.
Tickets for each screening are free, but must be reserved in advance. Members can reserve their tickets immediately, and any remaining seats will made available to the general public beginning Monday, Sept. 28, by calling the Membership Department at 607-547-0397 or by visiting the membership desk in the Museum.
The awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, Oct. 4, at 3 p.m. in the Grandstand Theater and is open to the public. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
For a complete schedule, please click here.
Stephen Light is manager of museum programs at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
Here are a few the trailers for some of the films at this year’s festival:
The Lost Son of Havana
Signs of the Time
Girls of Summer
The Farm Team
Holy Land Hardball
Road to the Big Leagues