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Today is opening day for my beloved St. Louis Cardinals. Every year, opening day is a thrill; the return to baseball, the re-birth of warm summer months and the unmistakable joy of going to a major league ball game.

However, those of us in St. Louis have something extra to celebrate this opening day: a new stadium. The old Busch Stadium has served our fair city well over the last 40 odd years, but now it’s time for a change. I think we all welcome this progress and are looking forward to viewing Cardinals baseball in a whole new way.

Yet, what is a baseball team, or a stadium, or a city without the people who support these ventures? Our local NPR affiliate interviewed a gentleman this morning that might be one of the best pieces of radio I’ve heard recently.

Prior to Busch Stadium, there was Sportsman’s Park. At Sportsman’s, Busch and the new Busch, you would and will find a man named Ed Kraft. Ed is 80 years old and started his career by selling 12 oz. bottles of beer in the old Sportsman’s Park. Now, at an age where most people are content to sit and watch the world go by, Ed is starting yet another baseball season, now selling programs and yearbooks to info-seeking fans-the first and only individual to ever work in all three venues.

As the season gets underway, I raise my $8 glass to Mr. Kraft and cheer on the Cards to another great season!

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