Dave Newhouse Today
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| By bubba69 on Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 10:26 am:|
Nice piece on Lil and the new ballpark today Great Work!
Bub, the piece is not on me, but on a fan who remembers and has felt the pain of a community losing their team. It would not be just Oakland losing the team, but the entire Bay Area losing the identity Oakland gives to the Oakland A's.
The identity Brooklyn gave to the Dodgers was never recaptured when they moved to another city. It is the city and it's people who gives the team it's identity.
Article Last Updated:
Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 4:14:06 AM MST
Local fans group pushes pitch for downtown A's park
LIL BARTHOLO grew up in Brooklyn. As a little girl, she watched the Dodgers move away, and all because of a too-smug feeling that the team wouldn't ever leave that fabled baseball borough. "They didn't take the steps to build a ballpark to keep the team there," she said. "I saw what happened to the borough after the Dodgers left. I still have that pain and feeling of what happened back then." Brooklyn still hasn't recovered 40-plus years later. A hole was cut into its heart, and no transplant could ever replace what Duke, Jackie, Pee Wee, Campy and the rest of "Dem Bums" meant to Flatbush. That's why Bartholo, now 58 and living in Novato, and four others formed the Oakland A's Fan Coalition, to prevent the A's from breaking Oakland's heart, either through leaving or contraction. Bartholo knew from her childhood a new ballpark is the only way to keep the A's in Oakland. And so her fan coalition circulated a petition, seeking support for a ballpark. More than 15,000 signatures have been gathered, with the count still growing. From a seed a tall oak grows, and from that tiny fan coalition a downtown stadium will be built in Oakland. Tuesday night, HOK Sport of Kansas City, the nation's premier stadium architects, will present to the Oakland City Council a comprehensive study showing that the downtown site between San Pablo and Telegraph avenues, abutting 20th Street, is the ideal location for just such a ballpark. Bartholo couldn't be more excited. "It's very important," she said. "We can't wait for the mayor -- or the (A's) owners -- to come out and make a big pitch. It's important for the fans to make a stadium pitch, to show that there is more support for baseball in Oakland than is shown in the local and national media." And so there will be a 6 p.m. rally Tuesday in front of City Hall prior to HOK's council presentation at 7:30. Fans are invited to the rally, at which former A's players will appear, to show local politicians -- if a petition isn't enough proof -- that the A's truly do belong in Oakland. "I've always been an optimist," said Bartholo, an A's season ticketholder of 22 years who attends every home game. "If the A's left, it would devastate the city more than it's realized. The atmosphere in Oakland is very analogous to the stands we had in Brooklyn -- the ethnic diversity. "In Brooklyn, we didn't have the glamour of Manhattan. Brooklyn is blue-collar. Oakland lives in the shadow of the glamour of San Francisco, but Oakland is like a Cinderella. Oakland has been the one that has danced in the big ball so many times." Four World Series championships to be exact, while the San Francisco Giants are Cinderella's ugly stepsister with no World Series flags hanging, even with a 10-year head start on Oakland. It's inconceivable the A's would move to Santa Clara County, which has rejected A's and Giants' efforts to relocate there. Well, when you're a hockey town ... And it's utterly unimaginable to conceive of baseball's eliminating the Oakland and Minnesota franchises, with six World Series titles between them. But baseball doesn't care about tradition; it only cares about new ballparks. Oakland is a great baseball town, like all other baseball towns, when the A's are playing well and their owners care about the town. Owners Steve Schott and Ken Hofmann should be thrilled with 2 million-plus attendance, given their carpetbagger mentality. A's fans should fall to their knees and thank Billy Beane and his talented scouts for their keen sense of talent, while also praying that a reincarnation of the Haas Family will again own the A's. "The stadium project is win-win," said Chris De Benedetti, an A's diehard who also formed the A's fan coalition even though he lives in San Francisco. "A stadium shoehorned into an urban setting will revitalize downtown Oakland and help the A's keep their free agents."
By all estimates
a ballpark with freeway access and adequate parking -- two new garages would be built near the site -- would bring 3 million people to downtown Oakland. A ballpark also would benefit Mayor Jerry Brown's plan to have 10,000 new residents downtown, not to mention the addition of new businesses and the restoration of the Fox Theatre.
"This ballpark can stitch the city together for the first time -- the lake, City Center and the county building," said Oakland council member Dick Spees, a ballpark advocate. "One city downtown."
Jerry Brown can count on one new Oakland resident already.
"If they build the ballpark," said Bartholo, "I'll move to Oakland."
Dave Newhouse can be reached at (510) 208-6466 or by e-mail at
| By chris_d on Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 11:51 am:|
Newhouse has been great, more than any other local sportswriter, he's the one who gives Oakland the credit it deserves. Speaking of deserving credit, there's one thing I'd like to clarify: Newhouse wrote that I helped form the coalition, and that's not accurate. He didn't ask me about that and I didn't claim that. I think he just sort of assumed it. The real co-founders, along with Lil, were Jeff Berchenko, Ron Cope and Stephanie Lucas. And they deserve credit for that and a ton of work they did after forming the coalition in January 1998, I believe.
Aside from that, however, Newhouse wrote a great column and he's become the voice of Oakland baseball. The words "Oakland" and "great baseball town" are used so infrequently, but it's true. Thank God for Newhouse.
Yes, you are correct Chris. And I did tell Newhouse the name of the co-founders which he chose to leave out of his column.
However, since you've joined the OAFC two years ago and became Chairman one year ago, you've made an incredible impact and contribution which also deserves a lot of credit and recognition.
And I agree with you on Dave Newhouse. He has always been there when we most need him.
| By eyleenn on Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 01:53 pm:|
I think we need to give a little credit to Larry Jackson as well. It was his original Laney College plan that really helped to get the ball rolling for both the OAFC and the City of Oakland.
| By bubba69 on Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 07:07 pm:|
I know that Lil...It was a great story!
I can't wain until Tuesday! "ll be at maxes about
4:30 or So....
| By jeffreyb on Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 10:39 pm:|
well...it's a long way off before credit is even an issue.
i didn't mind the factual inaccuracies, other than making it seem like its an OAFC rally. face it, as plenty here have pointed out, this is only gonna work with as broad a base of support as possible.
here we go...
you didn't mind the factual inaccuracies?
what factual inaccuracies Jeff...say it
and who the hell makes it seem like its an OAFC rally?
we have been reaching out to the entire community, distributing flyers in cars and to people who don't even know who we are to come to this rally...
what do you want us to do, apologize for sending postcards and emails to as many people as we can reach as possible?
| By jeffreyb on Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 12:16 am:|
jeez, lil. put that weapon down. the innaccuracies you and Chris already commented on. and of course you've been trying to build the rally and reach out. why would you think i object to that? Newhouse made it seem as if it was only an OAFC rally, which of course it is not.
get the fricken chip off your shoulder!
I don't think Newhouse made it seem as if it was an OAFC rally, which he knows and everyone knows it is not. From the beginning we have said we have been working with the city staff ballpark promoters and the Oakland Chamber of Commerce.
We collected and continue to collect signatures from people who want to stay informed of the ballpark drive. And we will continue to promote the project as much as we can. But this does not mean we are in charge or running things.
Serving as a vehicle and promoting fan interest does not mean we are in control of anything.
Yeah, you're right. Perhaps I do have a chip on my shoulder...and I wonder why?
And btw, I know you will have to have the last word on this issue. So be my guest. I won't continue this conversation and I'll put down my weapon.
| By jeffreyb on Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 10:01 am:|
>Perhaps I do have a chip on my shoulder...and I
i honestly don't know. here or in email, perhaps you could explain.
| By eyleenn on Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 02:49 pm:|
It was really the article by Guy Ashley in yesterday's Times, not Newhouse, that gave the impression that the Tuesday rally is an OAFC rally.
"Prior to Tuesday's Council meeting, the coalition will lead a 6 p.m. rally of fans in front of City Hall to trumpet support for the stadium drive. For details, see the coalitions Web site..."
The rally was actually suggested and supposedly promoted by the ballpark promoters. We supplied the database to the Chamber of Commerce to mail out the invitations. We have been doing the ballpark drive,and will continue to do so, collecting signatures for that purpose. We are
being willingly used as a vehicle in all of this.
Our website has promoted and supported everything about the ballpark, including the rally and the presence at the city council meeting.
It is not our fault if other websites, including the A's website chose to keep such a low profile
I went to various website front pages (different fan groups) and didn't see any banners or tags calling attention to March 12th.
So...we may be leading the promotion of this event, but we are certainly not in charge nor can it be considered an oafc event...
The Chamber of Commerce and the Labor Unions have been contacted and will hopefully be present at the rally and at the City Council Meeting.
Btw, I am listening to the A's game on KFRC...
Bill King mentioned that yesterday was the big party the A's hold every year for all their sponsors...
What a great opportunity to promote the ballpark drive or at least tell the fans they are aware of what is going on here on March 12th...
Why all this secrecy and hush hush about this first very important step of this marathon which is ahead of us?
All I hear is people asking about why the Mayor hasn't come out and said something...Well, is this ballpark for the A's or not? Why can't the A's come out and make a positive statement about this? Instead they continue with the suspense and playing hard to get.
| By kevink on Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 06:10 pm:|
what former players are going to be there tuesday?