The Kansas City Royals have done it right with their new Hall of Fame which opened on Friday July 17, 2009. The exhibits are all top notch starting with the Wall at the entrance to the Hall of Fame. A tour guide dressed in a Jackie Robinson Kansas City Monarchs uniform described the headlines that are enshrined on the ash wood wall appropriately using a baseball bat as a pointer. This area also contains replica lockers for the 3 Royals retired numbers of #10 Dick Howser, #5 George Brett, and #20 Frank White along with informational displays about Kansas City baseball history including the Cowboys, Blues, Monarchs, and Athletics among others.
After the 20 or so minute presentation the group was whisked into the Dugout Theater sponsored by Sprint. The theater designed is to look like a dugout that seats 40 people (appropriate because of the 40 man roster). The perspective of the field on the screen is from the dugout and you feel as if you are in the dugout at Kauffman Stadium. The film documents the history of the Royals which includes interviews from players and fans. A life size statue of Buck O'Neil is at the end of the bench that you pass as you exit to go into the exhibit hall.
The exhibit hall contains multi media displays and artifacts about Royals history. Many of the stations contain several videos that you can watch. A neat feature is the Royals Radio Network replica booth that has a "You Call the Play" feature where you can watch and listen to 6 famous Royals calls.
From here you move to the Hall of Champions where you are first greeted by a giant #5 made of 3154 baseballs that represents all of George Brett's hits. There is also a display of the gold gloves of Frank White along with wall displays and artifacts from each of the Western Division championships, American League championship, and finally the 1985 World Series trophy that contains a video presentation of the 85 championship.
The museum concludes with a room that contains the plaques of the 23 members of the Royals Hall of Fame.
The Hall is open on game days and no extra ticket is required upon admission to the ballpark. Tours are conducted in groups of 40 every 15 minutes. You are given the option of skipping the wall and film presentations and go straight to the museum if you choose. But I highly suggest you watch these presentations your first time attending the Hall. It is also open during the day for a $10 admission charge which includes an unlimited pass good for one year. Details are at the Royals website at http://kansascity.royals.mlb.com/kc/ballpark/hall_of_fame.jsp.
Click here for photos of the new Royals Hall of Fame.
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