In 2016, the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum celebrates the bobblehead collecting phenomenon with a new exhibit that highlights the many and varied designs and styles of one of the most unique and popular promotional items ever created. Bobblehead promotions help sell out ballparks and arenas around the country. The Reds Hall of Fame and Museum’s bobblehead exhibit highlights the bobblehead craze through the display of a wide array of bobbleheads dating to the introduction of the collectible as a novelty item in the early 1960s.

Bobbleheads come in an almost limitless variety of styles and have featured as subjects athletes, movie and television stars and political figures. The exhibit will feature all of the Cincinnati Reds bobbleheads that have been created as ballpark giveaways dating to the first set that was issued in 2001, plus every bobblehead issued by the Reds Hall of Fame. Along with the Reds bobbleheads, the exhibit will also include a selection of bobbleheads from other Major League teams as well as those from other sports and non-sports bobbleheads. Over 500 different bobbleheads will be on display.

The Reds Hall of Fame’s bobblehead exhibit promises to be a fun and exciting exploration of a most entertaining collectible.

The Super Bowl is the annual championship matchup for the National Football League with the winning team taking home the Lombardi Trophy, one of the most prestigious awards in professional sports. As one of the most watched sporting events in the world each year, the Super Bowl has evolved into more than just a football game. Year-long anticipation of the Super Bowl culminates with two weeks of celebrations that infuse the host region with excitement in the lead-up to the most decisive game of the NFL season between the league’s two best teams. The San Francisco Bay Area served as the host region for Super Bowl 50 with Levi’s® Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers, as the site of the game itself on February 7, 2016. As the NFL’s golden anniversary game, Super Bowl 50 carried with it a standard to pomp and excellence for all facets of the event.

With great fanfare came great expectations for fan fare. Game Day hospitality for VIP fans attending Super Bowl 50 required a certain level of comfort and convenience that incorporated such features as exclusive space, all-inclusive food and beverage, and pre-game entertainment. NFL On Location, the league’s source for event experience and hospitality at the Super Bowl, Pro Bowl, Draft, and International Series games, provided such amenities by offering various hospitality packages for special events taking place around Levi’s Stadium on Super Bowl Sunday. The 49ers Museum presented by Sony was the premier destination for NFL On Location Hospitality. With 20,000 square feet of stadium space dedicated to 49ers education, innovation, and heritage, the Museum was a natural landing spot for the football fans that flock to the Super Bowl every year as well as those coming to cheer on the participating Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos.  Planning began in July 2015 to convert the Museum into a pre- and post-game hospitality space for Super Bowl 50. The Event team from NFL On Location visited the Museum on several occasions and became ever more impressed with the space and how it operated. Since the Museum’s distinctive design projects an ambiance all its own, only a few décor enhancements were added in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl to get the space ready for the big day. Of the additions made was a black and gold color motif peppered throughout the space using cocktail tables, floral arrangements, and lighting design. Super Bowl 50 logo graphics were applied to glass surfaces to connect the space to the event taking place  on the Levi’s® Stadium field. Much to the appreciation of the Museum staff, the overall character of the Museum and the rich, visual representation of 49ers history were left intact.

Over 700 guests explored the Museum space in the hours before Super Bowl 50 kicked off, enjoying hosted bars and various food stations positioned throughout the Museum’s 11 galleries. Live television feed was projected onto large screens so fans would not miss a minute of the game’s lead-up coverage. The Morabito Theater, which normally shows the 49ers Signature Film, was utilized as a presentation space for former Denver Broncos Tight End and Pro Football Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe to speak about his football career and Super Bowl experiences as an added bonus to the hospitality event’s distinctiveness. Guests took in state-of-the-art technology and exhibits while experiencing all that the Museum had to offer. Though the Museum is steeped in 49ers lore, it is nevertheless an institution of sports heritage that was enjoyed by fans of all affiliations on Super Bowl Sunday. Any football aficionado can appreciate the impact that the San Francisco 49ers franchise has had on the game of football: its origins as one of the first professional clubs on the west coast, storied player, coaches, and executives, unprecedented championship success in the 1980s, and even today with its development  of the most high-tech venue in the NFL. Levi’s® Stadium and the 49ers Museum, the perfect blend of tradition and innovation, was the perfect setting host to Super Bowl 50, the NFL’s milestone game celebrating not only a season of triumph but also fifty years of gridiron achievement.

Former pro basketball player Ann Meyers Drysdale, veteran hockey player Joe Kocur, pro football placekicker Chester Marcol, longtime college water polo coach Monte Nitzkowski and sports car driver Tony Adamowicz have been elected into the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame for 2016.

Ann Meyers Drysdale was a four-time All-America basketball player at UCLA leading the Bruins to the National Championship in 1978.  An integral part of 1976 Olympic team that won the silver medal, Meyers Drysdale was the number one pick in the Women’s Pro Basketball League in 1978 and named league co-MVP in 1980.

Joe Kocur was a six foot, 220 pound right winger drafted in 1983 by the Detroit Red Wings as the 88th overall pick.  He played 15 seasons in the National Hockey League with the Red Wings, New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks.  Kocur was a three-time Stanley Cup Champion, first with the Rangers in 1994, and in 1997 and 1998 during his second stint with the Red Wings.

Chester Marcol kicked in college at Hillsdale where he was a four-time All-American.  Drafted in the second round of the 1972 NFL draft (34th overall), he was the second-highest draft selection in league history at his position.  During his nine year career, he kicked 129 field goals. Marcol twice led the NFL in scoring for the Green Bay Packers, was named NFC Rookie of the Year and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1972 and 1974.

Monte Nitzkowski was a two-time All-America swimmer and water polo player at UCLA and member of the 1952 U.S. Olympic team swimming the butterfly.  He coached water polo at Long Beach City College from 1955 to 1989 winning 32 conference championships.  He served as the U.S. National water polo coach from 1967-1984, coaching in four Olympics.  He also coached in five Pan American games where his teams won four gold medals.

Tony Adamowicz began a storied racing career in 1963 and was highlighted by several major professional driving titles.  He won the 1969 Formula 5000 Championship, the Trans Am season championship and three International Motor Sports Association season championships.

The awards will be presented to the recipients at the 44th Annual Induction Banquet on Thursday, June 23, 2016, at the American Polish Cultural Center in Troy, Michigan.  Tickets for the banquet, which begins at 6 p.m., are $100 and can be ordered by calling (313) 407-3300.  Information about the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame is available at



On January 15, 2016, Hockey Hall of Fame Curator Phil Pritchard added a 2015 Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup Championship ring to the Stanley Cup Championship ring display at the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The 14 karat white gold ring that boasts 355 custom princess-cut diamonds was added to the Stanley Cup Championship Ring Display in the NHL Zone which also features past Stanley Cup champions, including the first-ever Stanley Cup ring (1893) Billy Barlow (MAAA); Bill Hay’s 1961 ring (CHI); Daryl “Doc” Seaman’s 1989 ring (CGY) and Bob Johnson’s 1991 ring (PIT). The display also contains rings from the 1981,82,83, (NYI), 97,98, 02 (DET) 2007 (ANA), 2008 (DET), 2009 (PIT), 2010 (CHI), 2011 (BOS), 2012 (LA), 2013 (CHI) and 2014 (LA) Stanley Cup Champions, which were all donated by the owners or management of the teams.

We are very grateful to the Blackhawks organization, especially, Rocky Wirtz, John McDonough, Jay Blunk, Stan Bowman, Al MacIsaac and Norm Maciver,” said Pritchard. “The 2015 Championship ring makes a great addition to the Stanley Cup Championship display. Our guests, who visit us from around the world, will be thrilled to be able to view it.

St. Marys, Ont. – It’s one of the most diverse inductee classes in the 33-year history of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.

Ex-Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Pat Hentgen and former Montreal Expos hurler Dennis Martinez will be inducted in a ceremony on June 18 in St. Marys, Ont., along with trailblazing Canadian scout Wayne Norton (Port Moody, B.C.), long-time Blue Jays executive Howard Starkman (Toronto, Ont.) and early Blue Jays TV analyst Tony Kubek. Baseball pioneer William Shuttleworth (Brantford, Ont.) will also be enshrined posthumously.

“We’re proud to honour such a diverse class. Each of the new inductees has made a significant contribution to baseball in Canada in their own unique way,” said Scott Crawford, the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame’s director of operations. “We’re looking forward to celebrating their careers in St. Marys this June.”

The induction ceremony will be part of a festival of events that will also include a celebrity slo-pitch game and home run derby (June 16), the Hall’s 20th annual celebrity golf tournament and banquet (June 17) and a Downtown Family Baseball Street Festival (June 18).

2016 Inductee Bios

Pat Hentgen

Born in 1968 in Detroit, Mich., Hentgen has been part of the Toronto Blue Jays organization as a player, coach, ambassador or special assistant for 26 years. The intense right-hander was selected by the Blue Jays in the fifth round of the 1986 MLB amateur draft and he saw his first regular big league action with the club in 1992 when he pitched 28 games, primarily out of the bullpen, for the franchise’s first World Series-winning squad.

In the ensuing season, he was inserted into the rotation and blossomed into an all-star, registering 19 regular season victories and winning Game 3 of the World Series to help the Blue Jays capture their second consecutive championship. From there, the 6-foot-2 righty evolved into the club’s ace. After being selected to his second all-star game in 1994, Hentgen won 20 games and topped the American League in innings pitched (265-2/3), complete games (10) and shutouts (3) in 1996 to become the first Blue Jay to win the American League Cy Young Award. For an encore, he led the American League in games started (35), innings pitched (264), complete games (9) and shutouts (3) again in 1997.

In all, in 10 seasons with the Blue Jays, Hentgen registered 107 wins (fifth-most in franchise history). He also ranks fifth all-time amongst Blue Jays hurlers in games started (238), innings pitched (1,636), strikeouts (1,028) and shutouts (9).

Hentgen also pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals (2000) and Baltimore Orioles (2001 to 2003) during his 14-year major league career. After hanging up his playing spikes, he returned to the Blue Jays to work as a spring training instructor and he’d later serve as a team ambassador and as the club’s bullpen coach. He’s currently a special assistant with the team.

“When I was told the news about being inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, I thought, ‘What an honour!’” said Hentgen.  “I’m looking forward to a great weekend.”

Dennis Martinez

Born in 1954 in Granada, Nicaragua, Martinez recorded 100 wins (second-most in franchise history) in parts of eight seasons with the Montreal Expos from 1986 to 1993. The durable right-hander also ranks second all-time amongst Expos pitchers in games started (233) and innings pitched (1,609) and third in strikeouts (973), complete games (41) and shutouts (13). Nicknamed “El Presidente,” Martinez was the first Nicaraguan to play in the major leagues, and when he tossed a perfect game on July 28, 1991 – the only one in Expos history – the club’s play-by-play man and 2014 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Dave Van Horne famously quipped “El Presidente, El Perfecto.”

During his tenure with the Expos, Martinez was selected to three all-star games (1990 to 1992) and in 1991, he topped the National League in ERA (2.39), complete games (9) and shutouts (5). In his eight seasons with Montreal, he posted a combined 3.06 ERA and won 10 or more games seven times and 15 or more four times.

Martinez was traded to Montreal on June 16, 1986 after accumulating 108 wins in his first 11 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles. In also registering 100 wins for the Expos, Martinez became one of only 10 pitchers to reach the century mark in wins in both the National League and American League. He also toed the rubber for the Cleveland Indians (1994 to 1996), Seattle Mariners (1997) and Atlanta Braves (1998) during his 23-year major league career and finished with 245 victories, which ranks 52nd all-time.

Martinez was also active in charitable endeavors, establishing the Dennis Martinez Foundation to aid underprivileged children around the world. In recent years, he has served as the manager of the Nicaraguan national team and as a pitching instructor in the Orioles and St. Louis Cardinals organizations. He was also the bullpen coach of the Houston Astros in 2013.

Wayne Norton

Born in 1942 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Norton played in 1,206 minor league games – including five seasons in Triple-A – before becoming a trailblazing baseball executive and scout in Canada. In the mid-1970s, Norton founded and established Baseball Canada’s Junior National Team and he became a long-time coach and manager for the organization, while doubling as a part-time scout for the Montreal Expos. He also managed Canada’s Pan Am Games team in 1975, prior to helping to launch Baseball B.C. two years later. In the late 1970s, he was enlisted to create and write Baseball Canada’s first coaching manuals and many of the guidelines from those are still employed today.

In 1986, Norton established the National Baseball Institute (NBI) in Vancouver and hired 2007 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame inductee John Haar to be the first coach. The NBI evolved into the best baseball academy ever created in Canada and is often cited as the standard for similar facilities. Among the NBI graduates to play in the big leagues are 2015 Canadian Baseball Hall of Famers Matt Stairs (Fredericton, N.B.) and Corey Koskie (Anola, Man.), as well as Denis Boucher (Montreal, Que.), Steve Sinclair (Victoria, B.C.), Paul Spoljaric (Kelowna, B.C.), Rob Butler (East York, Ont.), Jason Dickson (Miramichi, N.B.), Aaron Guiel (Vancouver, B.C.) and Derek Aucoin (Lachine, Que.).

After leaving the NBI in 1994, Norton evolved into one of Canada’s most respected baseball scouts. Canadian Baseball Hall of Famer Pat Gillick hired Norton to scout for the Baltimore Orioles from 1996 to 1999 and when Gillick accepted the Seattle Mariners’ general manager position in 2000, he brought Norton with him. Norton has served as a scout for the Seattle Mariners since 2000 and has signed several Canadians, including Michael Saunders (Victoria, B.C.), Phillippe Aumont (Gatineau, Que.), Tyson Gillies (Vancouver, B.C.) and Tyler O’Neill (Maple Ridge, B.C.). For his excellence in scouting, Norton was named Mariners’ International Scout of the Year in 2007 and Canadian Scout of the Year by the Canadian Baseball Network in 1998 and 2013.

“The phone call informing me of my induction made me very happy,” said Norton. “It will certainly be an honour to be included in the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame. I am extremely grateful to my friends who nominated me, and to my baseball colleagues and family who supported my nomination. Their regard means a great deal to me. It is gratifying to have my contributions to baseball in Canada recognized and valued by my peers and acknowledged by the selection committee. I look forward to what promises to be a fantastic couple of days in St. Marys!”

Howard Starkman

Born in Toronto in 1945, Starkman has spent four decades as an executive with the Toronto Blue Jays. He was initially hired as director of public relations on July 4, 1976 and he served in that capacity until 1998. In that role, he was in charge of media relations, broadcasting, travel and team publications. He was also responsible for the club’s “Name the team” contest prior to the inaugural season that resulted in the Blue Jays name.

Starkman also played key behind-the-scenes roles in the Blue Jays’ first games at Exhibition Stadium and the SkyDome and in their playoff and World Series appearances through 1993. He also doubled as a public relations official for Major League Baseball for 15 World Series and 10 All-Star games. For his efforts, he was presented with the National Baseball Hall of Fame’s Robert O. Fishel Award in 1995, an honour that’s bestowed annually for excellence in public relations. Six years later, he was honoured with a 25-year service award from Major League Baseball.

In 1999, Starkman was elevated to vice-president of media relations with the Blue Jays, before transitioning to vice-president, special projects from 2002 to 2014. Widely respected by his colleagues and the media, Starkman has twice (1980, 1996) been honoured with the Good Guy Award by the Toronto chapter of baseball writers and in 2012, he received the President’s Award from Sports Media Canada for his career accomplishments.

In 2014, the Blue Jays established the Howard Starkman Award and named Starkman the first recipient. This award is handed out annually to the Blue Jays Employee of the Year “who best exemplifies the values of integrity, innovation, accountability, team work and a passion for winning.”

“I am truly honoured to be selected to the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame,” said Starkman, who continues to serve as a consultant with the Blue Jays. “I have been with the Blue Jays for 40 years and it is beyond belief and very gratifying that my contributions are being so recognized. It is very humbling and I’m proud to be included with so many illustrious players, executives and baseball dignitaries who have meant so much to baseball in Canada.”

Tony Kubek

Born in Milwaukee, Wis., in 1935, Kubek won three World Series as a shortstop with the New York Yankees between 1957 and 1965 before becoming a popular broadcaster for NBC. He spent 25 seasons behind the mike for the network and called 11 World Series and 10 All-Star games, as well as the Saturday afternoon “Game of the Week.” Along the way, he teamed with legendary play-by-play men like Jim Simpson, Curt Gowdy and Bob Costas.

The Toronto Blue Jays were fortunate to land Kubek as an analyst on their TV broadcasts in 1977 and during his 13 seasons in the booth for the club, he educated tens of thousands of Canadian viewers on CTV and TSN about the sport. On top of the insights he could provide as a former player, Kubek’s no-nonsense style and quick and extensive analysis made him one of the best and most respected analysts of his era. While with the Blue Jays, aside from his analysis, he was one of the first broadcasters to ask to communicate with the director in the production truck to suggest camera shots during the game that would improve the broadcast.

For his efforts, Kubek was the first broadcaster to work exclusively as a TV analyst to win the National Baseball of Fame’s Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasting excellence in 2009. He was also the first Ford C. Frick Award winner to have called games for a Canadian team. Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame inductees Tom Cheek (2013) and Dave Van Horne (2014) have also since been honoured.

After he left the Blue Jays, Kubek served as an analyst on New York Yankees games on the MSG Network for five seasons, prior to retiring in 1994.

“Overwhelmed, in a positive sense,” said Kubek when asked about how he felt about his induction in the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame. “Unexpected, because I was doing exactly what I’ve loved doing for much of my life, playing, watching and talking baseball. I had flashbacks of watching a young team being transformed into a winner. I’m grateful for being accepted by Canadian baseball fans, and for this wonderful honor. When I was asked to consider the job with the Blue Jays, I talked to Elston Howard, a teammate and great Yankee, who starred with the Triple-A, International League Toronto Maple Leafs. He said, ‘You gotta take it, they’re the best fans, a friendly city; they know their baseball.’ Ellie was right.”

William Shuttleworth

Born in Brantford, Ont., in 1834, Shuttleworth has been called the “Father of Canadian Baseball.” His contributions to baseball in Canada have come to light in recent years thanks to research by noted Canadian historian Bill Humber.

When Shuttleworth was living in Hamilton, Ont., in 1854, he organized Canada’s first formal baseball team, which was called the Young Canadians of Hamilton. From 1854 through the 1870s, Shuttleworth was a driving force behind the sport in Canada and he served as vice-president of the first Canadian baseball organization in 1864.

As founder of the Young Canadians, he transitioned the team from the old Canadian rules – 11 players on each team, two-inning games – to the New York rules (which are essentially the rules of today’s game) in 1860. But Shuttleworth was not just an organizer, he was also a catcher and leadoff hitter who participated in the second-ever international baseball game in 1860 which took place a few weeks after the first game that featured a rival Hamilton team. While he was still active as a player, he doubled as the president of the Young Canadians (the team changed its name to Maple Leafs in 1862) from 1860 to 1871.

Shuttleworth was also a member of the Ontario team (Hamilton and Guelph players) that finished third in a major Detroit baseball tournament in 1867. Shuttleworth also umpired important games throughout the 1860s, including a Guelph-Woodstock championship match in 1868.

Shuttleworth eventually moved to Geneva, N.Y. in 1893 to live with his son. He passed away on March 31, 1903 and is buried in Hamilton, Ont. He was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2015.


snoopy-kkWhile most readers might associate Peanuts with the game of baseball, other sports also figured prominently in Charles Schulz’s comic strip. Schulz created over 250 football-themed Peanuts comic strips and his “Fall Classic”—Lucy pulling the ball away from Charlie Brown just as he runs up to kick it—became a rite of autumn in American pop culture.

Schulz’s other football-themed strips are equally memorable forPeanuts aficionados. Who can soon forget the “Mad Punters’” exuberant capers, Woodstock’s valiant gridiron efforts, Marcie’s total ineptitude at the game, or the passion and ferocity which marked Peppermint Patty’s play?

The 50 Sunday and daily strips in this exhibition demonstrate the fun Schulz had with the sport and explore his wonderful world of Pigskin Peanuts. Visitors will also enjoy viewing football themed Peanuts objects and ephemera; dressing up in the team locker room; taking a photo-op on a football trading card; and trying their own hand at “pulling the football” from Charlie Brown.

The exhibit is on display through April 30. 

Pigskin Peanutsis organized and toured by the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center, Santa Rosa, California.