SAN DIEGO - The Padres return home Friday for a nine-game homestand, beginning with a weekend series against the Arizona Diamondbacks, followed by three games against the Cincinnati Reds and another weekend series against the San Francisco Giants. Highlights of the homestand include Summer Sky Blast, a Salute to the Military Child presented by Majestic and a postgame concert by the Lt. Dan Band.
Home action begins tonight, with a 7:10 p.m. start against the Diamondbacks. Before the game, the Padres will recognize 20 years of the Padres Scholars program. Over the history of the program, nearly 400 local students have been selected as Padres Scholars, representing nearly $2.3 million pledged toward college scholarships by the Padres Foundation, through the support of Padres players and ownership.
Following the game, fans are invited to stay to enjoy one of the biggest and longest fireworks displays in Petco Park history. Padres Summer Sky Blast returns Friday, lighting up the sky with launch points all over the ballpark. This year's show celebrates the greatest baseball movies of all time.
Saturday is "Baseball Night in San Diego." All fans in attendance on Saturday will receive a Padres Fedora presented by Cox.
Fans are encouraged to bring new and gently used children's books, appropriate for kids ages five and under, to Saturday's game for the Padres Wives Book Drive. Padres players' wives and significant others will be collecting books at the Petco Park gates from 5:30 p.m. until the end of the second inning. All books collected will be distributed to two local non-profits: Reach Out & Read and Words Alive.
Also Saturday, the Padres will honor the Padres Foundation's featured homestand charity partner, Semper Fi Fund, in a special pregame ceremony. The Semper Fi Fund's mission is to fund programs that provide immediate financial assistance and lifetime support for wounded, critically ill and injured members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families.
The Arizona series wraps up on Sunday with Salute to the Military Child, presented by Majestic, to recognize them for their service. Prior to the game, a group of military children will participate in an exclusive "press conference" in the dugout with Padres Manager Bud Black. Military children from Fort Irwin, an Army base in the Mojave Desert, as well as children from Navy and Marine Corps families in the San Diego area, will line the baselines during pregame ceremonies. Olivia Jensen, daughter of retired Navy Petty Officer Shawn Jensen, will sing the National Anthem while the Joint Services Color Guard from MCAS Miramar will present the colors. In the
middle of the 7th inning, Jazmine Rogers, daughter of Marine Corps Maj. Jacques Rogers, will sing God Bless America. In addition, military children will participate in Military Take the Field.
Sunday is also Baja California Little League Day at Petco Park. Beginning at 11:50 a.m., approximately 100 Little League players and coaches from Baja California will participate in a pregame parade around the warning track.
Prior to all Sunday home games, from 11:30 a.m. to noon, two Padres players will sign autographs at the Park at the Park for Jr. Padres Sunday Signings. A Jr. Padres membership is required to participate in the signing event. Membership is free, and kids can sign up online or in-person on the day of the event.
KidsFest at the Park returns Sunday, featuring bounce houses and other inflatables, games, face painters, balloon artists, and more kid-friendly activities.
Following Sunday's game, Padres hitting coaches Phil Plantier and Alonzo Powell will take part in a Jr. Padres Batting Clinic. Plantier and Powell will address the kids, who will then have the opportunity to receive brief one-on-one instruction on the warning track with instructors from Baseball ASAP. Kids can line up at the Beachers in the Park at the Park at the conclusion of the game.
On Monday, the Padres welcome the Cincinnati Reds to town. The first 25,000 fans in attendance will receive a Padres reusable tote bag presented by MLB Network.
Prior to the game, the Padres will recognize local players selected to participate in the 2014 Perfect Game All-American Classic, which will be held Sunday, Aug. 10, at 5 p.m. at Petco Park. Representatives from Perfect Game, Rady Children's Hospital and the San Diego Hall of Champions, will be on hand as part of Monday's pregame ceremony. Also set to be recognized Monday are two local standouts selected to play in the game this year: Outfielder Kyle Dean and pitcher Drew Finley, both of Rancho Bernardo High School.
On Tuesday, the club will highlight the service and sacrifice of San Diego first responders in partnership with Natural Balance. The third of six First Responders Salutes this season will recognize the San Diego Police Department. Detective Gary Hassen of the San Diego Police Department will perform the National Anthem. In addition, the Padres Foundation, in partnership with Natural Balance, will present the San Diego Police Foundation K-9 Unit with a $10,368 donation, the amount required to fund one K-9 officer. San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman will throw the Ceremonial First Pitch. For more information on the Padres First Responders Appreciation program, including exclusive ticket discounts, visit www.padres.com/firstresponder.
Taco Tuesday features $1 pollo asado street tacos sold at six locations throughout the ballpark. An additional location features gluten-free $1 street tacos.
Prior to Wednesday's game, approximately 1,200 kids will participate in a parade around the warning track as part of Youth Day Camp.
The Padres welcome the Giants to town on Independence Day, Friday, with a special 3:40 p.m. start time. The U.S. Navy Parachute Team, also known as the Leap Frogs, will conduct a parachute demonstration and land in the outfield during the pregame ceremony.
Also Friday, the Padres will join Major League Baseball in marking the 75th anniversary of Lou Gehrig's memorable speech. Prior to the game, the Padres will recognize representatives from the ALS Association of San Diego, ALS-TDI and Project ALS. In addition, players and coaches will wear a symbolic 75th Anniversary patch on their jerseys.
All fans in attendance at Saturday's game will receive a Padres beach bag presented by National University.
Ten inaugural recipients of the National University Military Scholarship will be honored prior to Saturday's game. The National University Military Scholarship Program recognizes currently enrolled National University students who live in San Diego, are active duty military or veterans, and who have demonstrated sustained educational success and leadership. About 24 percent of the university's students are prior service or active military. Many began taking National University courses at military bases where the university has a presence, or through the university's other locations and online programs.
Fans coming to Saturday's game are encouraged to bring items to donate to the Padres Summer Food Drive benefitting the San Diego Food Bank. Beginning at 2:00 p.m. through the end of the second inning, items will be accepted at dropoff locations on Park Blvd., with the main collection center located at the intersection of Park Blvd. and Imperial Ave. Per the San Diego Food Bank, the most needed items include canned meats (chicken, tuna), dry or canned beans, cereal, rice, peanut butter, canned soup, canned fruits and vegetables, pasta and infant formula.
The final game of the series and homestand is a Military Salute, presented by USAA. Philanthropist, actor, and musician Gary Sinise and his foundation will be recognized at home plate. The Gary Sinise Foundation is currently raising funds and awareness to build custom Smart Homes for severely wounded Marines in San Diego, including Sgt. Nick Kimmel and Staff Sgt. Jason Ross. A duo from Chicago rock band Stolen Silver will perform the National Anthem. Also Sunday, several hundred Marine recruits from Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego will be attending the game.
KidsFest at the Park returns Sunday, featuring bounce houses and other inflatables, games, face painters, balloon artists, and more kid-friendly activities. From 11:30 a.m. to noon, two Padres players will sign autographs at the Park at the Park for Jr. Padres Sunday Signings.
Following Sunday's game, fans are invited to stay for a free concert at Park at the Park by the Lt. Dan Band. Opening act Stolen Silver will kick off the show, followed by Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band, sure to entertain, educate, and inspire through an explosive 90-minute set. This fun and unique event will raise awareness and funds for the Gary Sinise Foundation. Discounted game tickets can be purchased at www.padres.com/LTDANBAND and $5 of every ticket purchased through this link will be donated to the Gary Sinise Foundation and help fund the custom Smart Homes for Sgt. Nick Kimmel and Staff Sgt. Jason Ross.
Tickets for all home games can be purchased at the Petco Park box office, online at www.padres.com, by phone at 619.795.5555, at the Padres Store in Tijuana, and at all Ticketmaster locations.