Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Crockett Night at Charlotte's BB&T Ballpark Sunday 9/3


On Sunday, September 3, it's Crockett Night at the ol' ballgame.

This coming Labor Day weekend, make your plans to head out to BB&T Ballpark, home of the Charlotte Knights baseball team, for a great evening of baseball and to visit with some of the great legends of Mid-Atlantic Wrestling and Jim Crockett Promotions.

It's the 2017 Crockett Foundation Night at the ballpark, part of the final weekend of the regular season for the triple-A Charlotte Knights.The event is organized by the Crockett Foundation, the charitable organization run now by Jim Crockett, Sr.'s granddaughter Debbie Ringley.

Crockett Foundation

DATE: Sunday evening, September 3, 2017
WHERE: BB&T Park, 324 South Mint Street Charlotte, NC (Parking & Directions)
TIME: Gates open at 6:00 PM, First Pitch at 7:05 PM (Wrestlers available before the game)
SPECIAL EVENTS: NWA Mid-Atlantic Wrestling Legends plus Fireworks after the game!

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I recently had the opportunity to chat with Debbie about what's planned for Crockett Night this year.
Dick Bourne: How did "Crockett Night” at BB&T Ballpark in Charlotte come about?

Debbie Ringley: It came about as a way to celebrate the 85th anniversary of Jim Crockett Promotions, both baseball and wrestling, last year. I had to come up with a way to put what Granddaddy created and the things that came after his death. Hosting wrestlers at a baseball game seemed to be the perfect way of bringing the two together. Last year’s event went so well that the Knights asked us back and we are going to make it a staple of both the Foundations and Knights events schedule each year.

Bourne: So the purpose for the event is to help raise awareness for the Foundation?

Ringley: It is to raise awareness. The wrestlers will not charge for their picture or autograph but they will be asking fans to throw some money in a jug towards a donation.

Bourne: You guys have some very cool wrestling-related merchandise that you sell on the Crockett Foundation website. Will some of that be available for fans to purchase at this event?

Ringley: We will have shirts, including our new "TBS 6:05" shirt, for sale and we will also have both of our wrestling books.

Bourne: I've seen the new "TBS 6:05" shirt - - very cool, it immediately conjures up memories of so many Saturday evenings where I wouldn't miss "World Championship Wrestling" out of Atlanta with David Crockett and Tony Schiavone.

Crockett Foundation / Mid-Atlantic Gateway
Ringley: The back of the shirt is awesome, too, with our Crockett Foundation logo and signatures of many of the wrestling personalities that are "tag team partners" of the Crockett Foundation.

Ringley: Jackie will be there to autograph his ["When Wrestling Was Wrestling"] and our second book contains stories about three of the wrestlers that will be there that night so it would be a great opportunity for a fan to get the books autographed by the subjects in the books. Both the books and the shirts will be on sale for $15.00

Bourne: Nice to have Jackie Crockett there to sign his book of photographs. He took some really amazing photos in the late 1970s and early 1980s. That is a wonderful collection.

Ringley: Both the books and the shirts will be on sale for $15.00

Bourne: What wrestling celebrities will be there?

Ringley: Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson of the Rock n Roll Express, Magnum T.A., J.J. Dillon, Baby Doll, Tommy Young, and Jackie Crockett.

Bourne: Wow, that's a great line-up and a small "who's who" of some of the big names of Jim Crockett Promotions in the hot period of the mid 1980s.

Ringley: It is, and since there was no [Mid-Atlantic Wrestling Legends] Fanfest this year, it may be the only gathering of this type in the Charlotte area this year. I don’t know of any opportunity like this around.

Bourne: I always enjoy seeing these guys get recognized and for fans to be able to show their appreciation for all they gave to the wrestling business. Will there be a special introduction of your special wrestling guests that evening at the game?

Ringley: All of the attendees will be introduced on the field prior to the game and just like last year Baby Doll will arrive on her Harley. I will be throwing out the first pitch but don’t expect much from that!

Bourne: Excellent! No pressure there, right?

Ringley: No, not at all!

Bourne: How will fans be able to interact with your special guests that night?

Ringley: They will be signing autographs and taking pictures with fans. All they will ask is a donation of some kind. Or a swag purchase from our merchandise table will get them pictures and autographs.

Bourne: Will Frances be there? Your mom [Frances Crockett] is such an important part of both the family history and baseball history in Charlotte.

Ringley: Yes, she should be. I think one of my sisters is bringing her. I have my hands full with all the others!

Bourne: I'll bet! Debbie, thanks for filling us in on Crockett Foundation Night 2017. I know both wrestling fans and baseball fans will have a blast.

Ringley: Thanks! Looking forward to seeing everyone there!

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DATE: Sunday evening, September 3, 2017
WHERE: BB&T Ballpark, 324 South Mint Street Charlotte, NC (Parking & Directions)
TIME: Gates open at 6:00 PM, First Pitch at 7:05 PM

If you are in the Charlotte area over Labor Day weekend, come out and support the Crockett Foundation and Charlotte Knights baseball. Buy some peanuts and some Cracker Jack and spend some time with the great legends of Mid-Atlantic Wrestling.