“Good evening Asheville Hippies fans! Welcome to McCormick Field!”
That’s Asheville Tourist broadcast manager and radio announcer Doug Maurer, with a preview announcement of the upcoming game against the Greenville Drive, and nope, that wasn’t a slip of the tongue. For one night, Thursday, June 29, the Asheville Tourists will be dubbed the Hippies, down to their tie dye uniforms.
“I want to make sure I call us Hippies all night long, because that’s what we are and the identity we’re going to take.”
Maurer says it all started with a twitter troll attack by the Greenville Drive in 2016
“They pretty much referred to the Asheville tourist fans as hippies in one of their twitter posts, but we stood up for our fans and we said you know if you think we’re hippies why don’t you go ahead and back that up.
The result was a friendly wager between the two teams. The team that lost the majority of the head-to-head contests in 2016 would wear a specialty jersey for one night the following year. Greenville would become the Rednecks. Asheville would become the Hippies.
“We played each other 24 times in 2016 and each team won 12. Go figure! Greenville took that as an opportunity to sort of back out of their end of the wager, saying we didn’t lose, we don’t have to wear those jerseys.”
But Asheville stepped up to the plate, and embraced the hippie spirit, complete with tie dye uniforms that will be signed and auctioned off after the game for the team’s charity, the Asheville Tourists Children’s Fund.
“We’re all going to get behind the Hippies name and the theme.”
And this radio announcer says he won’t call Greenville the Rednecks – but.
“ I will not be calling Greenville the Drive all night, maybe the guys in the grey uniform, that sort of thing. The Asheville Hippies take on the Greenville professional baseball team or something like that.” Says Maurer.
From McCormick Stadium, home of the Asheville Hippies, I’m Helen Chickering, BPR News.
The individual game worn jerseys will be auctioned off to fans with proceeds benefiting the Asheville Tourists Children's Fund. The Tourists Children's Fund provides shoes for children in need. Bids on the game worn Hippie Jerseys may be placed at www.AshevilleHippies.com.