Wrigley Field……you don’t look a day over 99!

Wrigley Field Wed April 23 2014

[photo courtesy of nydailynews.com]

On April 23, 1914, a new era in baseball history was born.  It was the first day the (then) Chicago Whales played the Kansas City Packers at Wrigley Field (originally named, “Weeghnam Park”) in Chicago.  If we fast-forward the hour-glass a mere one hundred years to the date, we see the Chicago Cubs playing the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 23, 2014.

Wrigley Field cost $250,000 to build.  It is the second oldest major league ballpark in the United States (Fenway Park in Boston was built in 1912).

Wrigley Field April 1914

 [photo courtesy of sportingnews.com]

The above photo was taken on opening day of Wrigley Field (Weeghnam Park) in 1914.  It was extremely difficult to find a photo from 1914 in front of the ballpark; nonetheless, we can at least take a peek inside the park!

Oh and we mustn’t forget the team photo from 1914:

Chicago Federals 1914 team picture - chicago history museum

[photo courtesy of the Chicago History Museum]

Seminal Wrigley Field has an interesting and colorful history, to say the least.  I’ve noted a few highlights:

In 1937, a  hand-turned scoreboard was installed and is still used today (note the digital board below the original):

Wrigley Field hand turned scoreboard - wikipedia.org

[photo courtesy of wikipedia.org]

Wrigley Field was certainly a holdout for modern conveniences!  The park did not get lights for night games until 1988:

Wrigley Field First Night Game 1988

[photo courtesy of bing.com]

Ah, the dreaded, “Curse of the Billy Goat”.  Legend has it that in 1945, Billy Goat Tavern owner Billy Sianis (ah yes, his first name was indeed, “Billy”) was asked to leave a World Series Game (and I am certain it was done um, politely!) due to the captivating odor his pet billy-goat was exuding.  Rumor has it that Mr. Sianis notably declared, “Them Cubs, they ain’t gonna win no more.”  Truth be told, the Chicago Cubs have not won a National League pennant since then, nor have they won a World Series since 1908.  Nonetheless, one of these days you will see the Cubbies as the World Series Champs! I just know it!

Billy Goat owner Wrigley Field

[photo courtesy of bing.com]

And the above photo is of the two “Billys”. *grin*

Clearly, I would be remiss if I did not mention a Canadian connection to Wrigley Field.  Much to my total and utter surprise, this year marks the beginning of a new restaurant in “Wrigleyville”; this is the neighborhood surrounding Wrigley Field.  Ah, I can see you wondering what it is!  Let me give you a hint:  the restaurant is indeed owned by Canadians, the food served is, in fact, Canadian.  If any of you said, “Tim Hortons”, oh how I wish it were true! No, the restaurant is called, “The Big Cheese Poutinerie“.  They serve 30 types of poutine!

The Big Cheese Poutinerie

[photo courtesy of chicago.eater.com]

For those who don’t know what on earth poutine is, I’ll cut straight to the fries; well, they are the main ingredient after all! Yes, poutine is a plate of french fries, topped with cheese curds, drenched in gravy.  It was invented in the 1950’s in rural Quebec (the Canadian province whose residents are primarily French-speaking).  I have never had poutine.  I think it is becoming much more popular in the rest of Canada; however, I’m not quite sure if I am brave enough to eat the melding of these ingredients quite yet.  Here, take a look:

poutine

What do you think, my fellow readers?  Should I try it? Ah, perhaps the proof is in the poutine! 🙂

And there you have it, baseball fans (and non-baseball fans alike).  Wrigley Field is certainly a gem in Chicagoland.  Perhaps the irony will not be lost if I attend a game this year AND have my first filling of Canadian poutine right here in the good ‘ol US of A!

 

 

 

 

 

 

  42 comments for “Wrigley Field……you don’t look a day over 99!

  1. May 7, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Now that’s history! yummy poutine too 😉

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    • May 7, 2014 at 10:29 am

      *LOL* Thanks, Andy! I’m still not sure if I am going to try it in Wrigleyville! 🙂

      Like

      • May 7, 2014 at 10:42 am

        You’ll love it and you may even want more after cause if it’s made right? oh boy it’s good lol

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      • May 7, 2014 at 11:03 am

        Andy! *LOL* I just don’t know; what types of poutine have you tried? Well, I say this because the place that just opened up here is from Quebec; this is their first US restaurant, and they are offering 30 types! How? *LOL* Cher xo

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      • May 7, 2014 at 11:33 am

        30!!! all I’ve had is with chili or just melted cheese and gravy :O wow take lots of pictures 🙂

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      • May 7, 2014 at 2:40 pm

        *LOL* Well I will do that just for YOU!!! Cher xo

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      • December 15, 2014 at 9:57 am

        Lived 7 years in Montréal and even now, I’ve still never had poutine!

        Liked by 1 person

      • December 15, 2014 at 10:59 am

        *LOL* Well I don’t feel so bad now! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

      • December 15, 2014 at 11:54 am

        Touché!

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      • December 15, 2014 at 12:57 pm

        Bless!! 🙂 Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  2. May 7, 2014 at 10:39 am

    The fries look truly disgusting. It reminds me of the Scottish specialty: deep-friend Mars Bars!

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    • May 7, 2014 at 11:01 am

      *LOL* Oh yes, I have heard about the deep-fried Mars Bars! EEK!! Cher xo

      Like

  3. Don
    May 7, 2014 at 10:40 am

    Fascinating history Cher. Poutine! Never heard of it. It looks like one of those dishes I would love to try, but I just know what it would do to me. 🙂

    Like

    • May 7, 2014 at 11:02 am

      Thank you so much, Don! We live very close to Wrigley Field; on game days, it quite exciting to go past it and hear the crowds! Yes, I hear you loud and clear, my friend! Perhaps I could eat the fries; maybe some cheese, gravy now and again, but all three at once? I’m just not so sure! Cher xo

      Like

  4. May 7, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Cher, you have done it again! What a great teacher you are. I never knew Wrigley Field was THAT old! What a good time to be there.

    As far as poutine is concerned, they don’t seem very appetizing to me, so I can understand your not trying that, and it’s surprising to me that I wouldn’t have any interest in that “dish.” Even though I LOVE french fries, and I always thought that I would be interested in food if there were french fries – but not this time. I can’t imagine that this new restaurant serves 30 variations of poutine. This is very brave of the owners – especially since, as far as I know, there aren’t that many French-speaking Chicagoans. Oh well, it’s for the adventurous food epicureans.

    Like

    • May 7, 2014 at 6:26 pm

      Awh, bless, Carol! Thank you! You always say the most thoughtful and kind things and I am extremely grateful! Yes, it is a lovely field, and I enjoy seeing it even from the exterior! I am absolutely dumbfounded as to how that restaurant can offer 30 varieties of poutine! I am sure the french fries stay as the base, and then other sauces and cheeses are added! Hhhmmmmm…. Yes, I think the owners are brave as well. Mind you, I am now hearing that poutine is offered at some pubs and bars here; you learn something new everyday! *LOL* Thanks as always for your wonderful comments, dear Carol! Hugs, Cher xo

      Like

  5. Michelle Oram
    May 7, 2014 at 9:37 pm

    I’m not a fan of poutine either. It just doesn’t appeal to me. Interestingly, when I was in Ottawa last week, one of my work colleagues, who was raised in Quebec, said he’d never heard of poutine until he moved to Ontario.

    Like

    • May 8, 2014 at 7:13 am

      Hi Michelle! I honestly think it is either a total, “YES”, or most definitely a, “NO”! For me, it’s the whole cheese curd thing that makes me think, “NO”. Well how about that! That’s the first time I have ever heard a native Quebecer say they have never heard of poutine! And to boot, only heard of it when they moved to Ontario! *LOL* Wow, now that’s one for the books! Thanks my dear!! Big hugs, Cher xo

      Like

  6. May 8, 2014 at 8:21 am

    Looks like a fun day and for some reason now I’m craving poutine…I’ll get over it…maybe. Thanks for the great post Cher. 🙂

    Like

    • May 8, 2014 at 8:27 am

      *LOL* Thank you, Donna! I still think it is crazy that I’ve never had poutine but lo and behold, an actual poutine restaurant shows up here in Chicago! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Cher xo

      Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 8:37 am

        My parents both loved it, but I realized one day that I never eat fries, so they must be just a lovely way to transport the gravy and cheese to my mouth. So I avoid it. What did you think of your first poutine? 🙂

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 8:44 am

        *LOL* That is funny, Donna! I’ve never had poutine, and I see that some people love it and some people hate it! It’s the cheese curd thing with me; it doesn’t appeal to me but I love so many other kinds of cheese! I’m going to investigate the poutine restaurant and see what is going on in there! 🙂

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 8:55 am

        There are so many versions now, I had it with feta once. Have a great day Cher! 🙂

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 8:56 am

        This restaurant that opened near Wrigley Field has 30 kinds! Feta…..Hhhmm, that would be interesting, too! You too, Donna, thanks for stopping by as always!!!! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  7. May 8, 2014 at 10:13 am

    Wow Cher, what a wonderful Historic post you have given us… Loved the research and photos… I can not say I would try the Chips Gravy and cheese curd… well not together at the same time.. . LOL.. Though Chips and gravy not so bad.. 🙂 .. Loved the Goat too.. 🙂 My didn’t Time Fly… and isn’t is flying just as fast.. 14 yrs since the millennium.. That doesn’t seem possible..
    Loved this post.. and learning much with my visits 🙂
    Hugs Sue

    Like

    • May 8, 2014 at 11:33 am

      Thank you so much, dear Sue! It is a wonderful, high energy place (Wrigley Field); not so sure about the poutine either! Yes, I quite agree, chips and gravy, don’t mind! The cheese factor……hhhmmm! Isn’t that funny about the goat? The goat himself looked like quite the character, didn’t he? Ah, isn’t that the truth. I cannot believe how time flies. It’s a rather remarkable accomplishment for Wrigley to still be in operation after 100 years! Thank you for your always welcome comments, Sue! Blessings and hugs, Cher xo

      Like

  8. May 8, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    Loved it all!

    Like

    • May 8, 2014 at 1:26 pm

      Well didn’t you just make my day!!! Thank YOU so much!!! Big hugs, Cher xo

      Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 1:26 pm

        Brought back some great memories~

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 1:28 pm

        Oh did it? I am so happy to hear that!

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 1:48 pm

        Grew up in Indy, it was always a favorite place to go~

        Like

      • May 8, 2014 at 1:49 pm

        Ah, that’ll do it! 🙂 Cher xo

        Like

  9. May 8, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Hi, I nominated you for a Liebster Award. I didn’t know where to contact you. All the details are on my site. http://susanneleist.wordpress.com/
    Susanne

    Like

    • May 8, 2014 at 6:48 pm

      Hi Susanne! Well thank you so much! I am honored and extremely grateful! That is so thoughtful of you and I really appreciate it!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Big hugs, Cher, xo

      Like

  10. May 8, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    Wow, Chicago. We live fairly close to each other. I live two hours from the Windy City

    Like

  11. May 10, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    I don’t anything about ball games but I have so much to tell you in a full mouth of poutine! Yummers.

    Like

    • May 10, 2014 at 5:50 pm

      *LOL* Ah, dear seeker! Hee! Cher xo

      Like

  12. Professions for PEACE
    May 11, 2014 at 4:04 pm

    The two Billy’s! Hilarious. Thanks for all you share, and I always enjoy learning something new with each visit! But poutine? No thanks. I’ve never had it and plan to keep it that way (granted, maybe to taste it is the secret but I’m just not that interested). Too bad it wasn’t a Timmie’s! Thanks for a fun post! xo hugs, Gina

    Like

    • May 11, 2014 at 6:52 pm

      My dear Gina! How great it is to see you! Thank YOU! *LOL* Yes, I am amazed at how many people LOVE poutine! Even the name bothers me! I am with you, my friend! Here’s to Timmies and that good ‘ol Chicago deep dish pizza! Ah, now that’s ZEN! Big hugs, Cher xo

      Like

      • Professions for PEACE
        May 11, 2014 at 8:59 pm

        Oh my dear Cher.. even your awesome comments make me laugh out loud! Ya what’s with that name? I think I’ll pass on anything with ‘poo’ in the name! LOL!! 😀

        Like

      • May 11, 2014 at 9:09 pm

        HEE! Awh, thanks dear Gina! I know and I totallyyyyyy agree! hehehehehe ShamPOO; no. POUtine; no. Now you are making me laugh out loud!!! 😉

        Like

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