The annual event allows fans to connect with past, present and future baseball players, as well as other esteemed guests during the hot stove season, with proceeds going to benefit the Children's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD), the Ted Williams Museum and the Fisher Cats Foundation.
"Since our team became involved in reviving the dinner in 2007, this event has meant so much to our organization," said Fisher Cats owner Art Solomon, who also serves as Chairman of the Board for the Fisher Cats Foundation. "We are so pleased to reach this milestone, and we take pride in being able to continue the rich tradition of this dinner. We want to thank all of the celebrated guests, sponsors, and fans over the years that have joined us in making a positive impact on three incredible organizations."
This year's guest list included many native sons of the Granite State, most notably former Cy Young winner Chris Carpenter, who recently announced his retirement from the game after compiling a 144-94 record over 15 seasons in the Majors.
Other New Hampshire natives on hand included Kevin Nolan (Nashua-Blue Jays), Joey Maher (Bedford-Yankees), Jordan Cote (Sanbornton-Yankees), Brad Zapenas (Salem-Cubs) and Mike Fransoso (Portsmouth-Pirates). We spoke with Cote and Fransoso and will have posts up on those two prospects in the coming week.
Also in attendance were Red Sox playoff spark plug Jonny Gomes, 5-time MLB All-Star Fred McGriff, two-time Cy Young winner and baseball's last 30-game winner Denny McLain and 2013 Miss New Hampshire Samantha Russo.
The affair, held at the Radisson Hotel Expo Center in Manchester, also featured an autograph season, live and silent auctions, and a question-and-answer session with guests of the head table.
Although the final numbers from the night have yet to be tabulated, the Fisher Cats had raised $979,794 through past dinners, so the $1 million mark was assured as the ballroom began to fill up with guests.
The team has already announced that the 2014 installment of the Granite State Baseball Dinner will be held on Saturday, November 22nd.
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