If you have never been to the annual Babe Ruth birthday party in Detroit you should really treat yourself this year.
The 25th Annual Babe Ruth Birthday Bash to be held at Nemo’s Bar in Corktown on Saturday, February 4th beginning at 7:14 PM (of course) will feature some very special guests.
Babe Ruth’s grandson Tom Stevens and great grandson Brent Stevens (who has attended the party before) will be there while former 1984 World Champion Tiger pitcher Dave Rozema will be doing a Q and A session from 8 to 8:30. Dave will also sign free autographs until 9 PM.
Nemo’s Bar, once ranked the number 3 sports bar in America by Sports Illustrated is located at 1384 Michigan Avenue, just a couple of blocks east of the Tiger Stadium site. The bar will be completely decked out with Babe Ruth photographs, famous quotations, and other memorabilia. In honor of Babe, the beer will flow and there will be plenty of free hot dogs, peanuts, Crackerjacks, Baby Ruth bars, and a birthday cake. There is no cover charge.
This is of course Ruth country, because the Babe arrived with his teammates at the Michigan Central Depot just west of the ballpark and stayed many nights carousing at the Book Cadillac Hotel just a few blocks east of Nemo’s.
Baseball’s most legendary player loved Detroit, including it’s beer, hot dogs, saloons, women (not sure what order) and of course Navin Field at Michigan and Trumbull where he hit two of his most famous home runs.
On June 8, 1926 he hit what is believed to be the longest home run in major league history when he sent a Lil Stoner serving high over the centerfield grandstands onto Plum Street. Officially measured at 626 feet, it reportedly then rolled a couple of blocks until a kid on a bike caught up with it where it traveled an estimated 850 feet.
Eight years later, in his final season with the Yankees, the Sultan of Swat hit his 700th career home run off of Tommy Bridges on July 13, 1934.( Prior to that season, the Babe nearly became Detroit’s player- manager, however when Ruth chose to play some exhibition games in Hawaii instead of finalizing a deal, an impatient Tiger owner Frank Navin instead acquired catcher Mickey Cochrane to lead his club.)
Tom Derry, who for the past two years has maintained the Tiger Stadium field with a group of volunteers dubbed “The Navin Field Grounds Crew”, started this party in 1988 at a bar on Grand River Ave. where 12 people showed up. Last year nearly 400 people were at Nemo’s in blizzard like conditions.
This February 6th will be “The Sultan of Swat’s” 117th birthday.
I have attended the event several times and I can tell you it is a lot of fun
So if you would like to raise your glass to the man who nearly single handedly changed the game of baseball and became one of the iconic figures of the 20th century, stop by and have a great time at Nemo’s on February 4th.
Visit Babe Ruth’s Party Facebook page here.