The corner of Clark and Addison was the scene of the 100th Annual ‘Next Year Day’ party on Saturday night. Rick Telander from the Chicago Sun-Times and Brad Zibung of The Heckler hosted the event at the Cubby Bear and hundreds upon hundreds of Cubs fans turned out to celebrate the start of the baseball season.
At the stroke of midnight, Steve Goodman’s family joined Rick Telander’s band, the Del-Crustaceans, and led the crowd in singing ‘Go Cubs Go.’ The balloons dropped as Telandar said, “It’s been 100 years since the Cubs won the World Series, but you must have faith that next year is here.” The night began with ‘The Worst Harry Caray’ contest and the winner, Boone, was determined by the amount of boos he received and actually turned in a nice impression. But questioned, with profanity, why Steve Stone is now on the South Side.
Sam and Bill Sianis, the owners of the Billy Goat Tavern and Grill….yes, that Billy Goat and the Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger skit from Saturday Night Live, told the crowd, “The curse is dead, no more curse, the goat is dead.” And of course, those in attendance responded with the loudest ovation of the night.
Before ‘Too White Crew’ took the stage, Brad from the Heckler hosted what he billed as America’s Favorite Board Game….’Pin the Mullet on the Sox Fan.’
The night was filled with Cubs fans from all ages donning various Cubs attire. Seymour Pennants from Since1908clothing.com made an appearance and there were even a couple of face painters sprinkled into the crowd….the evening also included a hot dog vendor for those that could not wait until Monday.
Jim McArdle spent time with the CCO, talked a little Cubs baseball and about the new book he is writing.
The surprise of the evening was seeing Bill Murray weave his way through the crowd and later on he joined Telander and is band on stage for a few blasts from the past.
The obvious, overwhelming theme of the evening was the Cubs ending the 100-year drought and Brad Zibung and Rick Telander did an excellent job of getting the Cubs fans fired-up for the upcoming season.
Clark and Addison is ready for Opening Day….are you?