The quest for an elusive victory by popular mascot Celery in its final WCC race will be one highlight of the Bisons' game Wednesday against Pawtucket, but the team has a slew of other events planned for its penultimate home game as part of a 30th anniversary celebration at Coca-Cola Field.
Also happening at the ballpark on Wednesday for the 7:05 p.m. game:
-- The first 3,000 fans will receive a 2004 championship banner replica, honoring the Herd's most recent Governors cup title team.
-- Buffalo Baseball Hall of Famer Jeff Manto, the only player in the ballpark's history to have his number retired, will hold a special autograph session from 7-8 p.m. (one item per person). Manto hit 79 home runs for the Herd from 1997-2000 and also became the only modern-era Bison inducted into the Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame.
-- The Earl of Bud, the popular beer vendor who danced on the dugout roof through most of the 1980s and '90s, will make a guest appearance.
-- Every 30th beer sold by iconic stadium vendor Conehead will be served free and all hot dogs will be sold for $1.
-- There will be a pregame happy hour at the Craft Brew stand from 6 to 7 p.m. featuring $3 craft beers.
-- There will be 30 lucky seat giveaways, $100 Tops gift cards awarded for every Bisons home run and a chance for fans to win $1,000 if a home run is hit on the 30th pitch of the night or any pitch that's a multiple of 30.
-- Any fan that catches a foul ball hit into the stands will receive four free tickets to the 2018 home opener April 12 against Indianapolis.
-- Fans will receive 30 percent off anniversary merchandise in the ballpark's gift shops and there will be Happy Anniversary messages on the Bisons Big Board from alumni currently in the major leagues. The night will be capped by postgame fireworks.
There's a good chance the Bisons could approach the 30,000 mark in ticket sales for the final two games, with Celery's last race and Thursday's Fan Appreciation Night celebration providing a big finish at the gate to their fifth season as a Toronto Blue Jays affiliate.
The Bisons are currently fifth in the International League in per-game tickets sold at 7,853 and will likely push over the 8,000 mark for the fifth straight year. They averaged 8,039 last season and have a high of 8,273 as a Toronto affiliate set in 2013.