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Play Ball! Meadowcroft to host vintage ‘Base Ball’ Day

All kids ages 17 and under receive free admission throughout August

Photo Provided The Somerset Frosty Sons of Thunder, Addison Mountain Stars and Keystone Base Ball Club will face off for Vintage Base Ball Day at Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village on Aug. 20

PITTSBURGH — Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village, part of the Smithsonian-affiliated Senator John Heinz History Center family of museums, will host its annual Vintage “Base Ball” Day beginning at 10:30 a.m. Aug. 20.

All kids ages 17 and under receive free admission to Meadowcroft throughout the month of August, including for Vintage Base Ball Day on Aug. 20, thanks to the support from an anonymous donor.

Baseball fans can celebrate America’s pastime with three local teams: the Somerset Frosty Sons of Thunder, Addison Mountain Stars, and Keystone Base Ball Club, featuring players like Adam “Dirtbag” Johnson, Jenette “Klink Klunk” Johnson, Chris “Spoonface” Nicholls, and Jason “Bird Dog” Ramaley.

Meadowcroft’s Vintage Base Ball Day happens to fall on the 160th anniversary of the very first game between the original Addison Mountain Stars and the Mountain Club of Altoona on Aug. 20, 1862.

The players will don 1860s uniforms and play by the “base ball” (originally two words) rules commonly used in that era:

Gloves were not commonly used;

Players were referred to as “ballists;”

A batter was called a “striker;”

A fly ball caught after one bounce resulted in the batter, or striker, being called out.

The family-friendly day of fun at Meadowcroft will feature three games starting around 10:30 a.m. The event will be emceed by Trib Total Media’s Paul Guggenheimer.

In addition to the Vintage Base Ball activities, visitors can step even further back in time and enjoy the family-friendly activities offered at Meadowcroft.

Families can explore an Indian wigwam in a recreated 16th-century Monongahela Indian Village, watch a blacksmith forge red-hot iron in the 19th-century Meadowcroft Village, and tour the Rockshelter, a National Historic Landmark and the oldest site of human habitation in North America.

For regular visitors, the event is included with standard Meadowcroft admission. Visitors are encouraged to pack a picnic and bring a blanket or lawn chair to enjoy the games.

Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village, a National Historic Landmark, is the oldest site of human habitation in North America and features a massive rock overhang used by the region’s earliest inhabitants for shelter more than 19,000 years ago. T

he 16th century Monongahela Indian Village includes wigwams, recreated prehistoric artifacts, and hands-on activities related to agriculture. Two 18th century structures help to spotlight the similarities and differences between the everyday lives of European settlers and American Indians in the Upper Ohio Valley.

Meadowcroft’s 19th century village features a covered bridge, one-room schoolhouse, blacksmith shop, and church that create a charming country village setting. Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village is located in Avella, Pa., Washington County, within an hour’s drive of Pittsburgh. For more, visit heinzhistorycenter.org/meadowcroft.

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