Clearwater Phan Phest a Success

It was a night for fans and players to connect. Young prospects to try their hand at games and for Phillies charities to raise some money. It's Phillies Phan Phest in Clearwater and it provided a great opportunity for fans and players alike. Plus, it was a lucky night for a <i></i> reporter.

The Phillies held their annual Phan Phest in Clearwater recently. Unfortunately, the weather wasn't being cooperating as clouds and rain put a bit of a damper on the event. A few of the activities had to be moved around but there was a very active and happy crowd of a couple thousand fans.

Phillies pitching prospect Zack Segovia tries his hand at a golf game during Phillies Phan Phest in Clearwater.
(Photo by Holly Oswald)
The event featured children's games and activities, a silent auction, autograph booths, a photo booth and a raffle of Phillies memorabilia. All of those events went on without any interruption from the weather.

Phillies prospect Zack Segovia served as my tour guide at the event. It was fun to watch Zack enjoying himself as he spent time talking to many of the staff and the fans on hand. He even tried his hand at some of the games.

One of my favorite places at BrightHouse Networks Field is the Tiki Bar in left field. That's where Zack and I started our evening. Eventually, we headed for the Threshers team store, where Zack checked out the new Threshers bowling shirts that they have in stock. From there we worked our way around the concourse signing up for all the drawings and buying raffle tickets. When the time came to stand in line for the autographs I was on my own. Two tables were set up – one on the first base side and one on the third base side - with three players at each table. Mike Lieberthal, Gavin Floyd, Cory Lidle, Ryan Howard, Ryan Madson and Randy Wolf were all on hand to sign autographs. Autographs were given for a $10 donation to the charities that the Philllies were supporting. The lines went quickly and the players were defninitely fan friendly.

Ryan Howard drew big crowds of autograph seekers at the Phillies Phan Phest held in Clearwater. Mike Lieberthal, Ryan Madson, Randy Wolf, Cory Lidle and Gavin Floyd were all on hand to sign autographs to benefit various charities.
The Silent auction tables were busy. Unfortunately, my bid for Randy Wolf's jersey didn't hold up. In fact, the bids skyrocketed very quickly. In all, there were 30 quality items available from the players and the raffle tickets were being sold at a brisk pace. The proceeds from the drawings, auctions and autograph signings went to the Humane Society of Pinellas County, Relay for life and Clearwater Parks and Recreation baseball and softball programs.

The evening ended with the drawing for the raffles and a fireworks display. The two items that attracted the most attention were an autographed jersey from Jim Thome and an autographed bat from Mike Schmidt. That's where the highlight of the night came for me; I turned out to be the lucky winner of Jim Thome's autographed jersey. That prize topped off a great night as I walked away with the jersey and autographs from all of the players at the event. Not a bad night.

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