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About The Original Babe Ruth Birthday Party

In the words of Tom Derry:

“The party started in 1988. There’s this old bar in Detroit that my friends and I used to go to and always played this birthday song that annoyed the old lady that ran the bar. I used to come in with all these pictures of old-time ballplayers and I used to always know who’s birthday it was and I would say, ‘Hey, it’s Ty Cobb’s birthday’ or ‘It’s Jackie Robinson’s birthday’ or ‘It’s Walter Johnson’s birthday’. So we’d all look forward to the next birthday coming up and we’d celebrate at the bar. Then we got to February and we realized that Babe Ruth’s birthday was coming up and we said to ourselves, ‘Now that calls for a real party’ – because Babe was all about partying, living big and enjoying life. Babe Ruth and a party just went together.

So we started the first year by sending out 15 or 20 invites. About 10 or 12 people came and it was a lot of fun. Then the next year we had about 40 people, then the next year 75, then a 100, 150, 200… and now we have about 300 people coming to the party each year. Even though it’s always been a word-of-mouth party, we have people coming in from all over the United States. We’ve had people fly in from Alabama, Utah, New York, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Ohio – all over the U.S. The same people come every year.

We also have a lot of the stuff that Babe enjoyed. You know, some of the obvious stuff, like the hotdogs and beer, and the cigars. But we also have Babe Ruth facemasks, buttons and a ton of balloons. We try to come up with different stuff every year.”

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