BRADENTON — Meet the Marauders — the public’s first official chance to welcome the Bradenton Marauders’ players and coaches — has been scheduled for 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday at The BeachHouse Restaurant, 200 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach.
The event is part of a weeklong countdown to Thursday, when the high Single-A affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates plays its inaugural game at 7 p.m. against the Fort Myers Miracle at McKechnie Field.
The roster will be unveiled during Monday’s invitation-only civic luncheon at Pirate City, and players will make appearances and sign autographs from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at the DeSoto Junction Goodwill, 3611 1st St., in Bradenton, and from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Lakewood Ranch YMCA, 5100 Lakewood Ranch Blvd.
Later Tuesday night, the team will play an intrasquad game under the lights at McKechnie Field. The game is for season ticket holders only.
The mascot, which was unveiled during Friday’s DeSoto Heritage Festival’s Children’s Parade, will be at Rogers Garden Elementary from 9 a.m. to 10:40 a.m. Wednesday and will be at the corner of 15th Street and Manatee Avenue from noon to 1 p.m.
The mascot will be at the same corner Thursday afternoon to help promote Opening Night. And throughout the week, the baseball used for Thursday night’s ceremonial first pitch will make its way around Manatee County.
Gates open 6 p.m. for the season opener. Select draft beers and sodas will be $1 as part of the Thirsty Thursday promotion, and a fireworks show will follow the game.