I really enjoyed the story from our local news today, the Women’s Sports Hall of Fame is coming to Sarasota! The highlight is members of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League singing the theme song of the league.
If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you’ll know how much I love AAGPBL. Recently, I wrote how the AAGPBL museum is moving from California to just across the street from historic Beyer Field where the Rockford Peaches once played in Rockford, Illinois. You can read that article HERE.
Over the years, I’ve gotten to meet many of the girls and even donned a Peaches costume for Halloween you can read at about me meeting several players and the costumes HERE.
So when I saw THIS ARTICLE about the Women’s Sports Hall of Fame and several of the former players singing, I couldn’t be more excited! I will donate to the cause, however, I won’t be able to shell out several hundred dollars for tickets to the dinner to meet the girls. *cue sad trombone*
That being said, when the museum finally opens, I’ll be at the front of the line, with my money in hand to see some memorabilia of my heroes, the girls of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League!
One of my favorite things about baseball is a part that is often forgotten. The All American Girls Professional Baseball League. At a time when most women got married before they turned 20 and stayed home to raise the children, these women were part of a change that is still felt today.
World War II forced many women into the workforce, while “Rosie the Riveter” is often celebrated, the women who played professional baseball are often forgotten. Then came Penny Marshall and the movie, “A League of Their Own”. While it’s technically a “historical fiction” as many characters are composites, the spirit is there. If you want to read a great article that Time Magazine did on the players, you can read it HERE. (Be sure to click on the link to the photo essay about half way through the article.)
I can’t tell you how that movie changed my life. I had been raised with traditional values. I remember seeing the “Broad Street Bullies” Flyers of the early 70’s and telling my father that I wanted to play hockey to which he replied, “You are a girl, you will figure skate, that’s what girls do.” It took me more than 15 years to get my father to allow me to play on his non-contact hockey team and the ALOTO movie was a big part of that.
I have been rather obsessed with the AAGPBL since then, I’m working my way through THREE different books on the league. In many ways, Rosie the Riveter and the AAGPBL did for women what Jackie Robinson did for people of color. I was lucky enough to meet several of the players in Reading, you can read the blog HERE.
On August 8, the Winnebago County Officials and the Park District (where Beyer Stadium of the Rockford Peaches was located) announced that the International Women’s Baseball Center would be moving the center from California to a location directly across the street from where Beyer Stadium once stood. The official announcement will be make at There will be training and educational facilities as well as a museum dedicated to girls’ and women’s baseball. You can read the new statement on the IWBC’s announcement on their site HERE.
I am beyond excited! In June, I very nearly drove the five hours from my aunt’s house to Rockford just to see the commemorative plaque at Beyer Stadium. The stadium was torn down in the early 1990’s and recently, the Friends of Beyer Stadium have worked hard to build a new baseball field on the site as well as dugouts and a beautiful fence. They are working hard to help future generations remember the importance of AAGPBL! You can read more and see many pictures of the hard work they have done on their Facebook page HERE.
I can promise you that when the new museum opens, I will be there! I have to, I mean where else can I see the Peaches’ bus?