April 26, 2010

Whether paying tribute to vegetables (Asparagus Night in Stockton) or classic American movies (Top Gun Night in Lehigh Valley), minor league theme nights have covered just about every inch of pop culture. We've compiled our favorites to determine the 20 best of the 2016 season. Enjoy!

Asparagus Night, Stockton Ports

Fire up your grill, bring your olive oil, maybe a little cheese. It's an asparagus party! That’s right, the Stockton Ports celebrated the famous vegetable in May with an Asparagus Night. Why? According to the team's website, "asparagus is the world’s favorite vegetable and a famous staple of Stockton." While a Google search of "most popular vegetable" tells a different story, we're not here to nitpick. Asparagus is an important vegetable and the Stockton Ports had every right to pay tribute to it. 

Full House Night, Brooklyn Cyclones

Everywhere you look, everywhere you go, there's a heart (there's a heart), a hand to hold onto.” The Full House theme song was in everyone's heads last month when the Brooklyn Cyclones paid tribute to everyone's favorite TGIF show. The first 2,000 fans received Uncle Jesse bobblebeads and the uniforms included his trademark pink bunny. There was also a Danny Tanner Clean-Off, a Kimmy Gibbler Stinky Feet Competition and a "How Rude" Pout Cam.

Nickelodeon '90s Night, Fresno Grizzlies

Kel Mitchell (of Kenan & Kel/Good Burger fame) was the main attraction when the Fresno Grizzlies took on the Reno Aces on '90s Nickelodeon Night early last month. The Grizzlies wore Grizz Burger jerseys while the Aces donned Mondo Burgers jerseys (if you've seen the movie, the uniforms will make more sense). And the game had a movie ending as the Grizzlies pounded the Aces 14-0. Maybe Fresno should invite Kel to every home game.

Netflix and Chill Night, Binghamton Mets

Top Gun Tribute Night, Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs

It's been 30 years since Tom Cruise took to the sky in Top Gun and the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs were not going to let that anniversary go by without a celebration. The first 3,000 fans received a Top Gun t-shirt and the entire stadium left singing the movie's theme song. Unfortunately, Cruise did not make an appearance.

Field of Dreams Night, Portland Sea Dogs

The Portland Sea Dogs will hold their annual Field of Dreams Nght in late August as part of Fan Appreciation Day. In keeping with tradition, the team will wear old-time uniforms and enter the stadium through a temporary cornfield in center field. Honorable mention to the Sea Dogs for hosting KNEEd to Know Night last month, the first theme night dedicated to stopping knee pain!

Ghostbusters Night, Birmingham Barons

Who you going to call? The Barons (and several other minor league teams). Ghostbusters went through a renaissance this summer, headlined by a somewhat successful remake starring Melissa McCarthy and Leslie Jones, plus a bunch of minor league teams throwing Ghostbusters Theme Nights. We went with Birmingham because these are our favorite uniforms among the group.  

Salute to 8-Bit and Arcades Night, Frisco RoughRiders

​We're picking this one for the uniforms alone, which makes us want to transport back to 1997 and play Tetris on our Gameboy. The team brought in retro arcade games for fans and re-created classic video games between innings. 

KISS Night, El Paso Chihuahuas

In an attempt to stick out their epic Chihuahuas mascot tongue as far as they can, the El Paso Chihuahuas hosted a kiss night with Kiss themed jerseys featuring the infamous tongue on their oh so infamous dog logo. And if KISS isn't your jam, the team will host a Gabriel Iglesias Night at the end of this month.

Salute to Seinfeld Night, Brooklyn Cyclones

The Cyclones paid tribute to Seinfeld for the third straight year and it may have been the best one yet.  In addition to a Roger McDowell Second Spitter bobblehead giveaway, the team renamed their stadium Kramerica Industries Park for the night and held a Red Dot and Astronaut Pen Contest. It makes us ask one question: How can anyone not love this night?

Glenn Hubbard Snake Night, Lexington Legends

When it comes to iconic baseball cards of yesteryear, nothing can touch Glenn Hubbard's 1984 Fleer card. Unless you've seen another baseball star with an eight-foot boa constrictor wrapped around his neck. Hubbard, now a coach for the Legends, received his own bobblehead tribute to the card in June. Now all we need is a Billy Ripken bat night to complete the circle of legendary '80s baseball cards.

Halfway to Festivus Night, Potomac Nationals

Maybe we're going a little heavy on Seinfeld but Festivus is a holiday worth celebrating ... and so is "Halfway to Festivus" Night. The Nationals honored this important event with a Frank Costanza bobblehead, Cosmo Kramer look-alike contest and an airing of the grievances. 

Space Jam Night, Charlotte Knights

Muggsy Bogues may be the shortest (5-foot-3) NBA player of all time but he's also one of the most popular. This may be due to his scrappy style of play and never give up attitude, but it also has something to do with his appearance in Space Jam. Bogues will return to Charlotte later this month for Space Jam Night, where he'll sign autographs and try and recover his hoops skills from the villainous Monstars.

Three Amigos Night, Fresno Grizzlies

The Three Amigos was described as "too confident, too relaxed, too clever to be really funny" ​when it first hit theaters in 1986, but it's become a cult classic. On it's 30th anniversary, the Fresno Grizzlies paid tribute to the film with Three Amigos Night. The festivities included an acoustic performance of My Little Buttercup and a postgame fireworks display. But the real value are these Three Amigos-inspired uniforms, which deserve a spot in Cooperstown. 

Jennifer Appreciation Night/Ginger Night, Bowie Baysox


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