Camp Day

The young boy gasped in horror as he stared down at his feet. There was his entire box of popcorn scattered on the dirty cement floor. Beside him a classmate pumped furiously at the ketchup spout, missing her hot dog entirely and creating a thick red lake on the counter. It was going to be an interesting day at the Rogers Centre concession stands.

Peter and I made our way past the mess to our regular seats. We have had baseball tickets for several years. From the excitement of “Joey Bats” Bautista, Edwin “EE” Encarnation, and the American League East Championship, to the loss of these players and other pillars of the team, we had stood by the Blue Jays loyally, even moving into the city so we would not have such a long trip to the ball park. (At least that was One of the reasons we moved). This year was labelled a year of re-building. We considered our new easy commute on the subway and decided to take a chance on the inexperienced team.

The first couple of games in the Spring were pretty close, giving us hope. But then in June there was a rout. As the opposing team scored run after run, we watched the CN Tower edge-walkers, filled up on nachos and beer, and generally waited around until it was the eighth inning and we could leave without feeling gypped. We skipped July, finding other activities in the country instead, and when our August game rolled around, we were hesitant. Should we even bother?

Then we saw the headlines: “Wednesday Is Camp Day at the Rogers Centre.” Well at least the kids would be a distraction. And were they ever! The entire 500 level was full of groups, dressed in identifying colours of lime green, fluorescent orange, red, yellow and Blue Jays blue. All of the little fans were hyper: they had been well-schooled in the cheers and they shouted themselves hoarse with screams of “Let’s Go Jays!” “Strike Him Out!” and their favorite: “Charge!”

When they weren’t screaming they were doing The Wave. And when they weren’t waving their bodies, they were waving their large foam fingers, or they were waving their camp-created banners. The banner contest had caught their attention and they had decorated huge rolls of paper with hearts, kisses, smiley faces; anything they could think of to say “We love you Blue Jays!”

When they were bored with cheering, they watched the jumbotron, hoping to see themselves or their friends live on the big screen. Or they watched as the announcer asked the big question: “What’s your favourite part of coming to the ball park?” The answer rose up from the young crowd: “The food!” And so, on cue, the kids begged their counsellors to release them to the thrill of the concession stands for a feast of chips, pop, cotton candy, gummie bears and ice cream on a stick. Good luck to any parents trying to feed them a healthy dinner after all of that.

Around the end of the seventh inning, the 500 level suddenly became quiet. Had the little fans all passed out from sugar overdoses? We looked up. The 500 level had cleared out. Camp day was over! We could sit back and watch the rest of the game in peace.

But no! By this time, the office group behind us had consumed several dozen beers and were getting loud. They hotly debated the advantages of wake-boards over sea-doos, they complained about fraud in the office football pool, they argued about the talents of their favourite bands. Finally they started in on the latest office gossip. Peter and I looked at each other. Time to leave. The Jays were losing and we had already gotten our money’s worth of entertainment.


3 thoughts on “Camp Day

  1. Great story and the poor Blue Jays still losing. Fun breakie with you guys yesterday. Went back to the Ross
    Mayer store and bought the dress….expensive breakfast but I love it. We’ll do it again. Love Ruth


  2. Another amusing article Sue. You always give me a laugh, thanks. Almost makes up for not seeing you at Wed golf😀😀🏌️‍♀️🏌️‍♀️! Moira

    Sent from my iPhone



  3. I personally think I would hear about camp day and run the other direction fast! You are a trooper Sueeee. And baseball added to the mix. Hmmm. The subway ride sounded like fun. Or a good book instead? Ha. You definitely know how you make the most of city living. I’m proud of you!


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