It's here! Opening Night for the Houston Astros

April 6, 2012 4:52:40 PM PDT
It's finally here, Astros fans. Tonight, the Astros will open the 2012 MLB season at Minute Maid Park, their first season under new owner Jim Crane and their last in the National League.

But before the game, there will be lots of fun outside the ballpark with the annual Fan-Fest. The free Opening Day street festival will have live music, games, food and prizes. Astros mascot Junction Jack and cousins, Jesse and Julie, will get everyone pumped up for the season.

Astros icons Jeff Bagwell, Jose Cruz, Larry Dierker and Jimmy Wynn will be on the field. Country music artist and Texas native Clay Walker will sing the National Anthem, God Bless America and Take Me Out to the Ballgame. There will also be a military flyover.

Gates open at 4pm. Pre-game ceremonies on the field will start at 5:35pm and the first pitch in the opener against the Colorado Rockies is set for 6:05pm.

The new ownership is changing its policy as to what fans can bring into the ballpark this season.

"Fans can bring in a bottle of water, 1 liter or less, as well as food in a clear plastic bag, whatever they want to put in it. But we have a lot of great food items in the ballpark as well," said Marty Price, Sr. VP of the Houston Astros.

The team is also experimenting with tailgating outside the park on two dates this year-- June 1st and June 2nd.

The Astros are celebrating their 50th year in baseball this season. The team will move to the American League for the 2013 season.


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