By Debby Woodin and Kevin McClintock
JOPLIN, Mo. —
Don’t know what to do with Mom on Mother’s Day?
The city suggests considering taking her out to the old ballgame or hitting the links.
Historic Joe Becker Stadium, which has been renovated in observance of its 100th anniversary, will play host Sunday, May 12, to an exhibition game between the Kansas City T-Bones and the Wichita Wingnuts of the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball.
Mothers will be admitted free of charge with another paid admission of $5 for adults or $3 for children ages 3 to 12. The game will be played at 2 p.m. at the stadium at Third Street and High Avenue. The event is sponsored by the Joplin Parks and Recreation Department and the Joplin Sports Authority.
“Joe Becker Stadium is a great venue for baseball, and we invite everyone out to enjoy the day,” Chris Cotten, parks and recreation director, said in a statement. “We recently renovated the concession stand area and added new seating that offers options to the typical bleacher seats in most ballparks. Everyone can be comfortable while spending time with the family and enjoying watching America’s greatest pastime.”
Seats were donated to the stadium by Joplin 66 Speedway.
“We really appreciate their generosity,” Cotten said. “They wanted to help with the renovation of Becker, and the seats are a great addition.”
The 2,000-seat park today is the site for games of all kinds, from semipro to collegiate. The Joplin Outlaws will play there this season.
The city also is offering free green fees for mothers who want to play with their husbands, sons or daughters at Schifferdecker Golf Course on Mother’s Day.
Green fees are $14.50 on weekends and holidays, and $11.50 on weekdays. Senior rates are $10 on weekends and $7.75 on weekdays.
To reserve a tee time at Schifferdecker Golf Course, people may call 417-624-3533. The course opens at 7 a.m.
WILDFLOWERS FOR MOM?
Sometimes gifts come in the smallest and most delicate of packages, and you can’t get much smaller or more delicate than the lovely stonecrop flower.
That is why naturalists with the Missouri Department of Conservation will be teaming up with Joplin children on Thursday, May 9, to help them give their mothers a beautiful card and wildflower on May 12.
The workshop runs from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Walter Woods Conservation Area, south of Joplin.
“This is the first time we’ve done anything like this,” said naturalist Cyndi Cogbill, speaking about the Flowers for Mom program. “We’re getting the (children) out, we’ve got these big (flower stamps) and helping them make cards, and they each get a sedum, or a wild stonecrop, to plant.”
The children can pinch off a stem, poke it into a soil-filled pot and, with some sunshine and water, easily grow it.
“We will talk about nature and flowers, and the beauty of springtime,” Cogbill said.
The stonecrop is a sturdy flower with “a great texture” and “little leaves that look like green balloons,” she said. “They have a beautiful texture and are fun to touch.” The flowers can grow in patches of shade; they don’t need direct sunlight to flourish.
While some women don’t prefer beautiful flowers, such as roses, for gifts because they die so quickly, the sedum can easily be transplanted into the soil outside a favorite house window.
“It’s a gift that will keep on giving,” Cogbill said.
The free program is open to children ages 4 to 12. Registration is required. To do that, people may call the Joplin MDC office at 629-3423.
Joe Becker history
A NUMBER OF CELEBRITY ATHLETES have played at the stadium since it was built in 1913. It was Mickey Mantle’s home park when he played his second year of pro baseball in 1950 with the Joplin Miners. Mantle grew up in Commerce, Okla. The late Ken Boyer, of Alba, Stan Musial and Joe Garagiola are other famous players who played at Joe Becker.