Bring out all your analogies about "the force" and your favorite Yoda-isms (which sound a lot like Yogi Berra-isms) because Saturday is the annual Star Wars Night at Coca-Cola Field.
Here are five things to know about Star Wars Night:
1. Star Wars Night IX
Star Wars Night debuted in 2008 and has sold out for the fourth straight year. Over the nine years the event has drawn a total of 117,000 fans to Coca-Cola Field. As with all Bison signature events, fans who have tickets at will-call are urged to pick up early. The box office opens at 10 a.m. Gates open at 4 p.m. for the 6:05 game and those who arrive early will be grateful they did.
2. It’s about the jersey and the gear
For the seventh straight season Bisons players will wear a customized jersey. This year features the Darth Vader Jersey – all black with one of the greatest cinematic villains of all time. For general sale will be the Star Wars Night Logo Caps. Created by New Era the camps come in red and blue and are available in both fitted ($29.99) and adjustable ($24.99). This year marks the first time Star Wars themed t-shirts will also be for sale.
3. The jersey auction and raffle details
Some Star Wars jerseys including those of Drew Hutchison, Jesus Montero and Dalton Pompey were up for bid already on Bisons.com with that auction ending at noon Friday. There will be at least 15 additional game-worn and autographed Bisons Star Wars jerseys raffled off at the game. Tickets are $10 each or three for $20.
4. The story line
The event is planned in the off-season and the production company spends the early part of the summer filming scenes to be broadcast between innings on the scoreboard beginning at the top of the fifth inning and culminating in an on-field battle and pyrotechnic show after the game. To recap the 2105 story, the Jedi wanted to destroy the mysterious crystals found by Celery and desired by the Sith. But the Jedi were defeated when the Emperor used the crystals to turn Master Jedi Quinlan Vos to the Dark Side.
5. The force is charitable
Many portions of the evening, including the jersey auction/raffle and sale of laser swords (which cost $7), benefit Compass House. The non-profit agency offers shelter and services for runaway and homeless youth in Western New York. The organization, founded in 1972, is the only shelter for both male and female homeless youth ages 12 to 24 in Erie County.