UPDATE: Why Isn’t ‘God Bless America’ Being Sung During El Paso Chihuahuas Games?
I wrote a blog yesterday that asked the question, why isn't 'God Bless America' being sung during El Paso Chihuahuas games. Ay chihuahua, did it cause an uproar! The KISS Facebook page almost broke from people weighing in on the topic. Well, I did some asking around, talked to an official with the team, and even got Major League Baseball to weigh in, and here's what I found out.
The tradition of singing 'GBA' during the 7th inning stretch began after 9/11. When the league went back to playing games after the attacks of 9/11, Baseball's commissioner, Bud Selig, asked all teams to sing 'GBA' instead of 'Take Me Out To The Ballgame'. That's what was done the rest of the season. When the next season rolled around, Selig told teams to "use their discretion" when deciding which song to sing in the 7th. The Texas Rangers sing 'GBA' when during weekend games, some MLB teams only sing it on special occasions, but the majority sing it on weekend games as well.
I called the San Diego Padres and explained the blog and asked if they sing 'GBA' or 'TMOTTB'. One of the women in their press office said they sing 'GBA' on Sundays, which is their Military Night, and on special occasions throughout the season. Military members or their families are the only ones allowed to lead the stadium in the song.
So where does that leave our El Paso Chihuahuas?
I spoke to Angela Olivas, the PIO of the Chihuahuas, and she said 'GBA' will be sung on July 3rd, on Military Mondays, and special occasions because the team doesn't "want the song to be redundant". She said they hadn't really heard from fans about the song either way, but they would reconsider 'GBA' if there was fan interest.
So, there you have it! Who knew one question about one song could lead to so much blogging!
You know I love me the El Paso Chihuahuas, but I have a bone to pick with them. There are dozens of songs played throughout the game from walk-up songs when batters come up to the plate, to filler songs during inning changes, to 'Take Me Out To The Ballgame' during the 7th inning stretch. There is even a lot of Mexican music played. But for some reason, the only time we've heard 'God Bless America' was on Opening Night. Why is that? What gives, El Paso Chihuahuas?
I've been to about 5 games at the Southwest University Park, and I love everything about the fan experience. It's easy to get to the ballpark, it's easy to walk around inside, the bathrooms are great, the food is top notch, but there is just one thing missing from a traditional day at a baseball game - 'God Bless America' being sung in the 7th inning.
Most major league teams sing 'Take Me Out To The Ballgame' during the 7th inning stretch during the week, and 'God Bless America' during weekend games. It's usually sung by a member of the military, and it really is a nice touch America's Game.
So why isn't our team singing 'God Bless America'? I don't know, but I sure hope they start because it's the only thing that is missing from the perfect fan experience.
Here's what I'm talking about!
And finally, the incomparable Kate Smith singing the best version ever! Please, El Paso Chihuahuas, add 'God Bless America' to the fan experience!