OT - A brief guide to the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction weekend

Submitted by Leatherstocking Blue on May 7th, 2018 at 9:40 AM

Most on the board know that Alan Trammell and Jack Morris were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame and will be inducted this summer on July 29. A few of you may be planning a trip to make the 8 hour (from Detroit) drive to Cooperstown so I thought I’d drop a little local knowledge to maximize your time on the weekend.

Make plans early; accommodations are tight for the weekend and the resort hotel, The Otesaga, is just for hall of famers that weekend, and the Dreams Park is a baseball tournament with over 100 teams competing each week and they scoop up much of the local hotel rooms. Try Oneonta, about 25 miles south of Cooperstown for hotels or plan your MGoCampout at one of the many campgrounds in the area. Glimmerglass State Park is at the north end of the lake and has a lot of sites, but there are many private campgrounds, too.

Rather than buy an individual ticket to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, consider an annual membership, which will be cheaper than a single day admission if you are family of 4. It also gets you some induction day perks and unlimited entry to museum for a year – time it right and your pass may still be good when Lou Whittaker is inducted next year. Info is at www.baseballhall.org

Parking is a bitch. There are trolley parking lots at the north, west and south entrances to the village. Parking there is free and for a few bucks, you can ride the trolley into town all day. Or pay $40 to park on somebody’s lawn.

Saturday is a golf tournament for the hall of famers and some of the greens are close to the road where fans line up to watch the legends play. The popular spot is across from the Farmers Museum and next to the Fenimore Art Museum. It is about a quarter mile walk from town or just south of the trolley lot at the north entrance to town.

The one don’t miss event is the hall of fame parade Saturday evening. There will be more than 50 hall of famers in town and at 6 pm they parade through town in the back of F-150 pickups (seriously) and they are close enough and slow enough that you can interact with them. Even a casual baseball fan will be blown away by being so close to so many legends.



May 7th, 2018 at 10:47 AM ^

"Regular weekend" is relative to Cooperstown.  During the summer all weekends for the most part.  However, the fall is a fantastic time to visit as traffic clears out after Labor Day.  If you want a more historic experience with fantastic views and price is not an issue then yes, The Otesaga is a great choice.  If you don't care about atmosphere or if you acyually need to keep a few dollars in your wallet after the weekend is over then any of the hotels south of town or even down in Oneonta are better options.  Additionally, many people have opened Airbnb's in the area if you want to be able to cook or do your own laundry.

Leatherstocking Blue

May 7th, 2018 at 12:05 PM ^

The Otesaga can be pricey, though the rate includes dinner in the formal dining room (men must wear sport coats), but the Otesaga is located in town and on Otsego Lake, one block from Main Street and about a 10 minute walk to the Hall of Fame. Even if you don't stay there, go there for a drink on the veranda overlooking the lake and the 18th green of Leatherstocking golf course. There is an affordable bar and grill downstairs at the Otesaga and they have an outdoor fire table, great for a drink in the evening. I'm a big fan of being able to ditch the car and walk when on vacation so the Otesaga's location can't be beat.

Leatherstocking Blue

May 7th, 2018 at 12:11 PM ^

Since you are a fan of Alan Trammell, you probably know what kind of guy he is. He was in Cooperstown a few weeks ago for his hall of  fame orientation - all inductees come during the off season to be shown around the museum and get an idea what to expect from their very emotional weekend - so Alan Trammell takes time out from his orientation and drops in on the local high school's baseball practice to talk to the kids. That, I think, really speaks to what he is all about.


May 7th, 2018 at 5:07 PM ^

My mom is from there (Cherry Valley for any locals who know that one). She got me to the HOF every year growing up, but refused to head home for induction week. Sigh.