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The Ballpark Vendor

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  • The Ballpark Vendor

    Hello Everybody!

    Inspired by an adjacent thread in this forum started by Elvis9045 this past March, I would like to initiate a thread focusing on the ballpark vendors.

    A litlle bit about myself, I grew up as a Yankee fan in the 1960's just in time to witness their CBS/pre-Steinbrenner lean years. My parents took me to ballgames maybe 3-4 times a year at the Stadium (I grew up in Upper Manhattan) and when I turned 15 in 1971, my first ever job was as a Yankee vendor. It was a part time occupation that I enjoyed doing until 1983 when I hung up my apron after I got married. I know several vendors who still work the games even today some 35 years after we started together as teenagers.

    It was a sheer thrill to regularly go to the ballpark before the gates open, watch the teams take batting practice AND THEN have the opportunity to make some money as the game was played. When I was in college, I started to occasionally bring my 35mm camera to take pictures of my working days and nights there.

    I have a lot of great memories, photos, and a few artifacts of that time which I plan to share here as time goes by, but what I would like to propose is opening up an ongoing dialogue of reminices of any vendors who worked at the old ballparks.

    Some of the possible topics, in line with Elvis' original questions, would include:

    Which ballpark did you work in? What years?
    What products did you sell? What brands were they? What prices?
    Where was the vendors dressing room located in the ballpark?
    What were your best memories your experiences? Did you get to speak with any players?
    What was the strangest experience you ever had as a vendor? (I have 2 bizarre stories myself).

    In those days, vendors were known as "hawkers" or "hustlers" and were commonly referred to in scorecard advertisements as "the Boy." Any counter personel (both men & women, as I don't recall women vendors at Yankee until after the 1976 renovation) are also invited chime in and share their experiences. Any regular fans may weigh in with a vendor story as well

    What I hope to accomplish is to provide an unusual insight for regular fans to see life "backstage" at the ballpark....

    Hoping to hear from you!

    Dennis
    BrooklynDodger14
    Attached Files

  • #2
    .75 for a beer? I take it this was awhile back. When was that? Beer now costs $6.00 and up.

    Comment


    • #3
      Vendors are anoying.If you want a hot dog,Coke or Beer why could you walk up to consession stand?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Buckdodgers
        Vendors are anoying.If you want a hot dog,Coke or Beer why could you walk up to consession stand?
        Have you ever got chinese food or pizza delevered?thats basically the same thing.Vendors have been there since the beginning of the game,I like them,and sounds like one sweet job.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Buckdodgers
          Vendors are anoying.If you want a hot dog,Coke or Beer why could you walk up to consession stand?
          I like to score the game from pitch to pitch, which means I don't get up. I like the vendors. It's called convenience. People getting up all the time to go to a concession stand is annoying.
          Last edited by Captain Cold Nose; 05-24-2006, 01:00 PM.
          Dave Bill Tom George Mark Bob Ernie Soupy Dick Alex Sparky
          Joe Gary MCA Emanuel Sonny Dave Earl Stan
          Jonathan Neil Roger Anthony Ray Thomas Art Don
          Gates Philip John Warrior Rik Casey Tony Horace
          Robin Bill Ernie JEDI

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by kckid2599
            Have you ever got chinese food or pizza delevered?thats basically the same thing.Vendors have been there since the beginning of the game,I like them,and sounds like one sweet job.
            Trust me, it's not. You're on your feet all game, walking around, so you don't really get a chance to watch the game, and you're hauling all that stuff around. If you're carrying beverages, you'll likely get some spilled on you. A lot.
            Dave Bill Tom George Mark Bob Ernie Soupy Dick Alex Sparky
            Joe Gary MCA Emanuel Sonny Dave Earl Stan
            Jonathan Neil Roger Anthony Ray Thomas Art Don
            Gates Philip John Warrior Rik Casey Tony Horace
            Robin Bill Ernie JEDI

            Comment


            • #7
              Ushers have a better job than Vendors do.I was an game day staff at Memorial Stadium when the Baltimore Ravens were there.I Get to set up padding at Goal Post put pylons on the field.Put Teams Benches there put Lines on the Field and I watched the Game. Plus i got to meet and speak to the players too.

              Comment


              • #8
                Ushers are quite anoying but Vendors delever the food too you're seat.
                smoker

                Comment


                • #9
                  At the Cardinals' spring training stadium in St. Pete, they had a singing vendor, this old black dude who would really entertain folks by singing little songs between innings. He died in the.....mid 90s, I think,.....but he was great!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by driver62
                    .75 for a beer? I take it this was awhile back. When was that? Beer now costs $6.00 and up.

                    Though that paper hat design goes back to the early 60's, the $.75 price is from 1973, the last year of the "old" Stadium. The sticker covers the 1971-72 beer price of $.65. As you can see by the 1949 photo (taken from a NY Post 2001 Stadium retrospective) suds was sold $.30!

                    Beer was sold in cans cased at 24 cans per load, or if you were a good selling vendor, you could take out a "Double" of 48. In the 70's we had these huge can openers that would make a gigantic hole in the can to minimize the spray of foam that would come from all the shaking of moving the load around. Each can was opened and poured into a large waxy cup. After the 'new" Stadium opened, beer was largely served draft and cans were abandoned.

                    Ruppert Beer was the obvious brand sold at Yankee from 1923 until 1946 when Ballantine Beer became the primary beer. They remained the top suds until 1967, when Pabst became the TV sponsor and a brand called Kruger Pilsner sponsored the radio broadcasts. Miller and then Schaefer took over in the 70's.

                    Dennis
                    BrooklynDodger14
                    Attached Files

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Tiger Stadium Vendors in the 1930's

                      As best as I can make out, from left to right, you have your choice of a Coffee, Frankfurters, Ice Cream (?), Coca Cola, Peanuts & Cracker Jack (?), and something in Dixie Cups...

                      (taken from an eBay listing)

                      Any old Tiger Stadium fans are welcome to comment...
                      Last edited by brooklyndodger14; 06-04-2006, 08:08 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Food at Shibe Park-- WHAT?? No Pat's or Geno's????

                        Attached Files

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by brooklyndodger14
                          As best as I can make out, from left to right, you have your choice of a Coffee, Frankfurters, Ice Cream (?), Coca Cola, Peanuts & Cracker Jack (?), and something in Dixie Cups...

                          (taken from an eBay listing)

                          Any old Tiger Stadium fans are welcome to comment...
                          Attached Files

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Yankee Stadium vendors, 1940's

                            (picture is from John Durant's "The Story of Baseball in Words & Pictures" (1947, Revised 1949 & 1959, Published by Hastings House, NY)


                            Selling (from left to right) Coffee ($.10), Bottled Soda ($.10), Frankfurters (price unclear), Ice cream ($.10), Scorecards ($.05), and another Ice Cream.

                            These vendors were employees of the Harry M. Stevens Company which was the concessionaire to all three New York ballparks. Their uniforms were composed of white pants, white jacket (note the necktie on the hotdog vendor), and white conductors (or Foreign Legion)-type hats with placards announcing the vendors wares and prices attached by elastic around the crown.

                            Dennis
                            BrooklynDodger14
                            Attached Files

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Sacking Peanuts before the game (1940's)

                              (also from Durant's "The Story of Baseball in Words & Pictures")
                              Attached Files

                              Comment

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