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The Mayor of Cooperstown is not worried about the lack of Hall of Fame inductees

Jan 23, 2013, 5:20 PM EDT


A couple of weeks ago we linked a New York Times article quoting residents of Cooperstown, New York who were not at all pleased that the BBWAA failed to elect anyone to the Hall of Fame.  They worried that, due to the lack of any living inductees, this summer’s induction ceremony — which is normally the town’s most important economic event — will be a dud.

Jeff Katz, the Mayor of Cooperstown, tells ESPN’s Darren Rovell that he’s not too worried about that. He tells Rovell that “the idea that this will seriously hurt our town is just not true.” The reason: diversification. There are burgeoning youth baseball tournaments in the area that bring thousands of visitors and growing businesses that render Hall of Fame weekend less important than it used to be.

One hope that’s true and not just boosterism by a public official.



  1. DJ MC - Jan 23, 2013 at 5:35 PM

    On the one hand, this is true. They hold many different tournaments and other events to bring people into the town and even out the money from Hall of Fame weekend. This isn’t Amity Island closing the beaches in Jaws.

    However, it is like taking New Year’s Eve away from New York City. Eliminating that many people from a single event will still have a significant impact on the local economy.

    That also doesn’t take into account what may happen if the issues with Hall of Fame voting continue into the future.

  2. themuddychicken - Jan 23, 2013 at 9:35 PM

    I finally made it to Cooperstown with my family in the summer of 2011 for the first time ever. The day before hitting the HoF itself, we settled into our hotel, drove around, ate out, etc. The main thing we noticed was just how many youth teams were everywhere. They filled our hotel, they crowded the restaurants. We made it to some of the fields too to watch some of the games, and they were full of all kinds of teams and parents.

    I’ve only been once, so I can’t compare it to times past, but they certainly seemed to have a very lively youth baseball culture there.

  3. joerymi - Jan 23, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    Perspective is nice.

    He knows full well there are a handful of guys that are close that will draw big crowds. Chipper Jones and Derek Jeter come to mind. Not sure what the record crowd is, but I am willing to bet Jeter will break it.

  4. randygnyc - Jan 24, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    Joerymi- funny that you mention Jeter. My 11 year old daughter made me promise to make hotel reservations on the day he retires, 5 years in advance for his induction. She refuses to go to the HOF until that weekend.

  5. Minoring In Baseball - Jan 24, 2013 at 6:27 AM

    We went last spring, and a lot of the store owners were stuggling to make ends meet then. What hurt them, though, is that most shops has the exact same hours as the HOF. They need to stay open an hour or two after the HOF closes, to catch the fans leaving the Hall and looking for cheaper memorabelia, as the gift shop was stupidly expensive. We stayed in Oneonta, too, because non of the hotels/motels in Cooperstown had reasonable rates. In this economy, you have to be realistic with your prices. It’s cheaper to stay 15-20 miles away and drive then to stay in the local hotels. And unless your part of one of the tournament teams, or the summer college league teams, there’s really nothing else to keep you in Coopertown for the night.

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