Special to the Herald
NEW BRITAIN - Grab your kielbasa and your glove because on Aug. 11, New Britainâ€™s Polish community will have its day at New Britain Stadium.
Polish Heritage Night is a highlight on the New Britain Beesâ€™ summer schedule. All are welcome to come out and celebrate the great American pastime with some great Polish pastimes.
Polish Heritage Night is organized through a partnership between the Bees and The Polonia Business Association.
PBA President Adrian Baron said the night will be a celebration of Polish and American culture and history. He said he wants to help familiarize more Polish people with baseball and â€ťintroduce others to the people of Little Poland,â€ť sharing the culture of the â€śuniqueâ€ť community.
From Carl Yastrzemski to Stan Musial, Polish-Americans have attained stardom in Major League Baseball, and Baron wants to make sure that people know about the Polish influence on the game.
The night will feature entertainment and a number of special deals. Ryan Hegley, who works for the Bees, said tickets will be only $5 for anybody of Polish heritage.
He also said large groups can pre-order tickets and sit nearly anywhere in the stadium.
The first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a free souvenir item from the team, and all fans will get to see a fireworks show after the game.
Other attractions are likely to include Polish food and music, though those details are not set.
Baron said a number of Polish groups, such as the Polish Boy Scouts, will be in attendance. Additionally, Bees mascot Sting will be joined by Maya the Bee and Stanley the Dragon, two of Little Polandâ€™s mascots.
For a local Polish community of nearly 20,000, this could be a very special night, especially after the success of the Little Poland Festival in April. Little Poland is already famous statewide, and Baron said people come to Broad Street from the Polish communities of places like Hartford, Stamford and Bridgeport.
Some of those people may want to take in the Bees game as well.
Baron said this promotion is special because it signals the growth of the relationship between the Bees organization and the New Britain Polish community. The Bees have been a â€śgreat community partner,â€ť and Baron wanted to thank them and help to promote them within his community.
This seasonâ€™s promotion is just another step in this â€ścrossoverâ€ť relationship between the team and Polish groups in New Britain.
Bees manager Wally Backman has donated signed baseballs to the community, and the Polish people responded by gifting Backman a Polish Army helmet.
The Bees hold promotions for different groups to encourage people to enjoy a night at the ballpark.
Polish Heritage Night is just one of the many promotions that the Bees are holding this summer.
The game on Aug. 11 starts at 6:30 p.m.