Friday night's "Carbondale Community Day" at Rent One Park in Marion - a game between the Southern Illinois Miners and the River City Rascals -- was a great success -- a feather in the caps of the Chamber of Commerce and the Southern Illinois Miners. While at the game, I touched base with City Councilman Lance Jack about his support for the newly proposed City Sales Tax increase, and also with Meredith Rhoads and Lisa Cardinale of the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce.
You should have seen Lance's eyes light up when he saw Meredith approach. If you had, then you would have been standing with me, which would have been cool, because we'd be together, and I wouldn't have to tell you about it here. But Meredith has that effect on everyone she meets; so positive -- she's like the Nicole Sack of local business -- although she dropped the ball by not inviting Richard "Pete" Peterson, retired SIU prof, and author of the St. Louis Baseball Reader, to be among those who threw out the first pitch.
But future Mayoral candidate (i predict) Joel Fritzler was one of those who threw out the first ball. I didn't see if he reached the plate or not. But also tossing were Kevin Baitty, Woody Thorne, and a player to be named later. Four, count em 4 first pitches.
Lance said he's running the Lick Creek restaurant now, which is fitting, since he was chief cook and bottle washer in the kitchen at Harbaugh's for years, and has a "lick creeky" lifestyle, with many music contacts and friends.
Meredith was busy handing out fans and tickets to the play area -- and getting a check for $313 from the Miners organization, a kickback from ticket sales. Councilman Jack was in that photo, too.
Lisa C. was with her kids, who were diggin' Dippin' Dots, little ice cream pellets in a small upside-down Cardinals helmet, invented by an SIU alum, named Curt Jones.
Ran into Bryan Trammel, pastor of the New Beginnings Community Church, who used to be in the building where European Cafe was recently located (and LaRoma used to be). I first met Bryan in 2003, when he his new church had just opened, and the local street people were puzzled? Well, now the congregation meets at a new location off Striegel Rd. and the local street folks congregate at Veterans Park.
But the highlight of the night for me was getting a video clip of a Miners' stadium vendor hawking his products. I told him I'd put it on YouTube. He said they might want to use it at the stadium. I should send it to the Arthurians, right up the block from me on Town Square, since they create the Miners' media.
I left before the game was over, with the Miners were ahead 6 or 7 to 0 when I left for the 7th inning stretch, and rode my motorcycle down the 14 mile stretch of highway 13 back to Carbondale.