Muskegon Clippers draw community to historic baseball park

Along the Lakeshore, you can enjoy America’s favorite pastime with the Muskegon Clippers.

The summer collegiate team has returned for another exciting season of baseball at historic Marsh Field in Muskegon. 

The Clippers opened their season last week with a six-game homestand, featuring three games against the Detroit Jet Box and three games versus the Royal Oak Leprechauns.

The Clippers are part of the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League, which is a developmental league for college athletes from across the country. These student-athletes are looking to hone their skills, and possibly get spotted by baseball scouts as they hope for an opportunity to play at the next level. 

The Clippers will play a 42-game schedule during June and July. With 19 home games, there are many opportunities to enjoy America’s pastime.

Great happenings

This season will be full of great happenings at the ballpark, promises Tim Lipan, the public address announcer at the Muskegon Clippers games. Lipan is responsible for making sure the fan experience is top-notch. 

“We love to have great baseball, and we really focus on making sure that the fans who come to the game have a great time,” he says. “We're doing almost anything we can to try to engage the fans and make sure they have some good family fun beyond just the baseball. That’s probably why we have set attendance records in our league for the past two years. We have something very unique.”

The public is a big part of what happens on the field. Community members are selected to throw out the first pitch and sing the national anthem. Little League teams run out on the field with the players during the national anthem and shag fly balls during batting practice.

Rave reviews

The Clippers have gotten rave reviews from baseball experts and casual fans alike. Not only is great baseball being played, but the fans love the historic 106-year-old ballpark and the fun and interactive atmosphere that is created during the games.
The excitement includes: 
  • Walk-up music for the players
  • Singalongs for fans
  • The Clippers' famous Beer Batter
  • Contests and games for fans between innings
  • Dance-alongs with fans
  • Guests performing the national anthem
  • Kids participate on the field in the introduction of players
  • Fans are allowed to run the bases after the games
“We have games in between innings where we engage the fans in that kind of stuff. We have a mascot that is hilarious. It does all kinds of wacky things throughout the game,” says Lipan. “We play a lot of music and try to engage the fans with our music. So there are sing-alongs, dance-alongs, things like that. We give the best dancer out there a pair of tickets to another game.”

About the Clippers

The Clippers have a great lineup of ballpark food, soft drinks, and ice-cold Budweiser products. And of course, the Clippers will have team gear and merchandise available for purchase.

The Clippers have completed their 30-man roster and have signed players from universities such as Michigan State, Western Michigan, Indiana State, and San Jose State. The players live with host families, which provides an immediate fan base. 

The roster also features several standouts from West Michigan, including former players from the following high schools: Zeeland East, Grandville, Forest Hills Northern, Forest Hills Eastern, Rockford, and Hudsonville.

The Clippers are coached by new manager and former Muskegon Clipper player Logan Fleener, new pitching coach Deon Felger, and legendary high school coach Brian Wright as assistant coach. The Clippers’ general manager is Walt Gawkowski. The Clippers are owned by Pete Gawkowski.

Game tickets are $5 for adults; $3 for senior citizens, $3 for students; $2 for children 5-12. Children 5 and younger are free.

For details, contact Pete Gawkowski at 231-638-7696 or visit the Cliippers website at muskegonclippers.com or the Facebook page at facebook.com/muskegonclippers