D’backs’ CEO Derrick Hall says his players love the annual Winter Classic Holiday Party. Image: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
On Thursday, December 13th, the Arizona Diamondbacks hosted their 15th annual Winter Classic Holiday Party for kids in need. Over 600 kids attended and were treated to a day of fun with many D’back players, executives and employees. A week before, the organization was named one of the “Best Places to Work” in the Phoenix area by the Phoenix Business Journal. The D’backs finished fourth in the medium-sized company category, the fourth consecutive year the club placed in the top five.
Sadly, the day after the party was one of the most horrific days in our country’s history, the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. I live about 60 miles from there and while I don’t have any personal connections to that town, there are some co-workers who live real close to it. Thankfully, no one they knew was involved. I don’t think you can read more than five minutes about the tragedy or watch five minutes of coverage on television without crying. The misery will continue long after the last child and the last brave teacher are laid to rest.
Now that it is my day to post, I decided that some good news needed to be written even if it had nothing to do with balls and strikes, trades and free agents signings. I am pretty sure most professional sports organizations have tremendous outreach programs. I have covered the D’backs for almost a year and from what I have seen, they are one of the best there is. The kids at the party enjoyed a day they will never forget. Team President and CEO Derrick Hall remarked that the Winter Party is one of the players’ favorite events to participate in. Seeing the photos and the priceless expressions on everyone’s faces reminds us all that baseball, while just a sport, can have a positive impact on so many people.
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