The Hartford Yard Goats played their home opener Thursday night – the first game of the team’s peanut-free era. The Yard Goats are the first pro baseball team in the U.S. to ban peanuts and Cracker Jacks from the ballpark.
The team has even asked fans to sing a different version of Take Me Out To The Ballgame to mark the change. Instead of "buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks," the staple entertainment for the seventh inning stretch is now supposed to feature “buy me a hot dog and Yard Goats cap.”
Trevor Hooker is a sixth-grader from Marlborough. He said he has a life-threatening peanut allergy and that peanut dust alone could force him into anaphylactic shock. For that reason, he’d never gone to a baseball game – until Thursday night.
"The Yard Goats with their new peanut-free policy made it safe for me to attend a game," said Hooker. "We all hope that it's going to start a trend in that more ballparks across the nation will become peanut-free."
Signs have been put up at the main gate alerting fans that the Yard Goats home park is now peanut-free. The team added more popcorn stands throughout the park to offset the loss of peanuts.