Joplin Blasters gear up for formal opening day - KOAM TV 7

Joplin Blasters gear up for formal opening day

JOPLIN, MISSOURI - Managers of the Joplin Blasters say things ran smoothly at the stadium during last night's exhibition game.

Today, several workers and movers brought in all the finishing touches.

Thursday night marks the official beginning of a new tradition of America's greatest pastime in Joplin.

The formal opening of the $4.7 million Joe Becker Stadium has many on deck to check it out.

"What I've seen is beautiful, but I haven't been inside of it yet," said David Peeples, Carthage resident. "I'm anxious to go in there to look at it."

Those who have already been inside for Tuesday's exhibition game, say they are more than impressed.

"Oh, I love it," said Austin Gallagher, team member. "The construction and the advancements, everything they've done to the field, it's been great."

Adding finishing touches, landscaping and checking supplies has been heavily underway.

The stadium features up to 2,400 fixed seats, and has three different types of concession stands.

"We have three different menus," said Gabriel Suarez, CEO, Joplin Blasters. "They have a hot dog with macaroni and bacon on top of it. There's so many different items."

Team managers recommend purchasing single admission tickets online to reduce long lines at the gate.

"We are expecting very large crowds all weekend and throughout the year, so the best way to get your tickets to guarantee your seats is online," Suarez said.

While the stadium has been entirely reconstructed, its history of greatness remains.

Once the home field of baseball legend Mickey Mantle, both team members and fans are ready to get the ball in play, and make a name for professional baseball in Joplin.

"Opening day is when all the butterflies come out, and everybody starts in first place," Gallagher said. "Hopefully we can bring some wins back to this town."

"We're excited to come and watch them play," Peeples said.

Game time tomorrow against the Wichita Wingnuts is set for 6:35 p.m.
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