It’s nearly June and, if you live in the D.C. area, I don’t have to tell you that summer is, essentially, already upon us.
That brings bad news in the form of mosquitoes and the life of your undershirts, but good news when it comes to minor league promotions, which really ramp up once school is out for summer.
It’s worth checking the calendars of your local team to see what weeknight specials they run, as there are always good deals to be had, especially Monday-Wednesday. But we’ve highlighted some of the more major promotions on our local teams’ calendars that you may want to add to your own and start planning for.
June 1: Bud Light 1K Beer Run | Fireworks & Star Wars Night — Bowie Baysox
June 15: Stranger Things Night w/ appearance by Cara Buono + fireworks — Bowie Baysox
In a summer chalk full of retro nostalgia (as you’ll see), this contemporary pop culture promotion will bring one of the stars of Stranger Things to the ballpark for an appearance a month before the new season lands.
June 18: Carolina League All-Star Game — Frederick Keys
For the more prospect-interested minor league fan, you’ve got a chance to catch the best of the Carolina League all in one place as the Keys host this year’s All-Star Game. There will also be postgame fireworks.
June 21: Field of Dreams 30th Anniversary Celebration Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
This celebration will include an appearance by Dwier Brown, who played John Kinsella (Brown will also appear for a similar promotion for the Potomac Nationals Aug. 10). The night will also include a Boy Scout Night & Sleepover on the field.
June 22: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom 35th Anniversary Night — Potomac Nationals
In the tradition of interspersing former players with pieces of pop culture, the P-Nats will be giving away Indiana Jones-themed Stephen Strasburg bobbleheads and wearing special theme jerseys. It will also be a scout night, complete with fireworks. (WTOP is a copresenting sponsor of fireworks)
June 23: Toy Story at the Ballpark — Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
The Blue Crabs are an independent league team in Charles County, but still run a slate of promotions that rivals that of any minor league team. For this one, they’ve got a Slinky giveaway, Toy Story character appearances, and player autographs, while kids can run the bases postgame.
June 27: R&B Night w/ appearance by Ginuwine — Bowie Baysox
D.C. native Ginuwine will appear and perform at the ballpark. Did you know Ginuwine’s birth name is Elgin Baylor Lumpkin? You do now.
June 28: Keyote’s Character-Palooza Birthday — Frederick Keys
Keyote is the Keys mascot, for those unaware, so if you (or your kids) are a costumed character lover, you’ll have plenty of them on hand, including a Minion, My Little Pony and others, plus postgame fireworks.
June 30: Latin Baseball Day | Helicopter candy drop | Food truck event — Bowie Baysox
The Baysox will take the field as Los Cangrejos Fantasmas de Chesapeake (Chesapeake Ghost Crabs) as part of MiLB’s Copa de la Diversion initiative. There will also be candy dropped from a helicopter and a first-ever food truck festival, along with a car show pregame in the parking lot.
July 6: Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary Night — Potomac Nationals
The P-Nats are back with another throwback movie crossover, giving away Carter Kieboom Proton Pack Bobbleheads and wearing Ghostbusters theme jerseys.
July 7: Mike Mussina bobblehead — Bowie Baysox
If you’re looking for a more traditional bobblehead of a local legend, the Baysox will be celebrating the Orioles and Hall of Famer Mike Mussina, with the first 750 through the gates taking home a bobblehead.
July 13: Winter Wonderland — Aberdeen Ironbirds
TBD on the details, but according to the Ironbirds, there will be a “frozen tundra” and “ice skating performances” at Ripken Stadium in mid-July. Hopefully, Santa’s got a breathable suit.
July 19: Aberdeen Steamed Crabs — Aberdeen Ironbirds
The Aberdeen Steamed Crabs regional alter ego jerseys are back for another go round, along with a fireworks show.
July 20: Woodstock 50th Anniversary Night — Potomac Nationals
A packed night will celebrate not just the 50th anniversary of Woodstock with music and theme jerseys, but also will feature a Juan Soto “Road to the Show” Childish Bambino bobblehead and finish with both fireworks and a Scout Night. (WTOP is a copresenting sponsor of fireworks)
Aug. 3: Aberdeen Legacy — Aberdeen Ironbirds
The team will honor the Ripken Legacy and both brothers Cal and Bill Ripken will be in attendance. Get there early for a pregame catch on the field.
Aug. 9: Ace Ventura Pet Detective 25th Anniversary Night — Potomac Nationals
In addition to their Ace Ventura celebration on and off the field, the P-Nats will have a T-shirt giveaway and are inviting Pets in the Park — not just dogs, but “cats, hamsters and more.” You’ll have to ask them exactly what “more” entails.
Aug. 10: Office Night w/ Leslie David Baker appearance — Frederick Keys
There will be eyerolls everywhere as Leslie David Baker, who played one of the most beloved characters from The Office, Stanley Hudson, will be on hand. Fans can also take home a Dylan Bundy bobblehead and enjoy postgame fireworks.
Aug. 12: Space Jam Night, with 1v1 basketball tournament — Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
The Blue Crabs say they’re not sure yet if they’ll keep the one-on-one tournament to little leagues or expand it to the general public just yet, but either way, there will be plenty of basketball celebrated.
Aug. 15: Drag Night — Bowie Baysox
Minor league teams everywhere are famous for their dancing grounds crews, but this night is actually what it sounds like — the first ever Drag Night in professional sports, featuring local Drag Queens.
Aug. 18: World Record Day — Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
Be part of the biggest game of catch … ever as the Blue Crabs attempt to set a new world record. They’ll need 1,946 people (973 pairs) or more to pull it off.