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The Red Sox are one of Boston’s most beloved franchises and oldest teams in professional sports. They are most well-known for their diehard fans, and for Fenway Park, the oldest baseball venue in the country.

Here are 8 reasons to join the iconic fan base known as Red Sox Nation this season:

Fenway Park

Built in 1912, Fenway’s 100+ years of history are filled with countless memorable moments. It seats the fourth fewest people in the MLB, giving fans an especially intimate experience. The Green Monster, a 37-foot wall in left field, is one of the coolest features in any ballpark and offers visitors an incomparable bird’s eye view of the ballgame. Yawkey Way, a short street bordering the park, is an experience in itself with its buzzing vibe, souvenir shops, and vendors advertising their goods in quintessential Boston accents.

The History

Since the Red Sox won the World Series in 1912 (Fenway’s opening year) they have battled curses, rivalries, and historical moments. In recent history, the Sox are tied with the San Francisco Giants for the most World Series victories since 2004, the year the the Sox broke “Curse of the Bambino.” They also hold the MLB record for most sellout home games in a row with 794, only 20 short of the record for consecutive sellouts for any professional sports arena.

The Food

Though Fenway Franks get most of the attention, there are other delicious food options at Fenway Park. The Kayem Italian sausages, steak and cheese sandwiches, and New England clam chowder are actually tastier choices, though you can only purchase them at concession stands. If you’re only in the mood for a snack, it’s easy to spot vendors hawking baseball favorites like peanuts, crackerjacks, and ice cream. If you’re hungry before you enter the game, vendors on Yawkey Way sell the delicious Italian sausages right outside the park!

The Young Talent

The Sox have picked up several exciting young players in the last few years. Xander Bogaerts and Mookie Betts, each only 23 years old, had great seasons last year. Both players are expected to improve significantly this year as they grow more comfortable with the level of play in the MLB.

Big Papi’s Final Season

David Ortiz, AKA Big Papi, is one of the best hitters to ever play for the Sox. He ranks third in home runs, and in the top four in many other categories with legends like Ted Williams, Carl Yastrzemski, and Jim Rice. Ortiz announced before this season that it would be his final one, ending a spectacular career. Red Sox Nation will miss him both for his incredible talent and his personality.

Sweet Caroline

One of the most fun traditions at Red Sox home games is the singing of the song “Sweet Caroline” in the middle of the eighth inning. In karaoke-like fashion the song is muted at certain parts so that the crowd can channel its inner Neil Diamond and belt out the words.

Wally the Green Monster

The Red Sox mascot Wally takes his name from the famous left-field wall in Fenway Park. He is said to have lived there since 1949 before emerging in 1997 on opening day. Whether he is dancing on the dugout singing along to “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” or visiting fans in their seats, Wally constantly interacts with visitors and making sure they have a good time.

Before and After the Game

Part of the game day experience occurs before the first pitch and after the 9th inning comes to a close. Yawkey way, Brookline avenue, Lansdowne street, and Boylston street are home to some of Boston’s most exciting bars. Blazing Paddles at 82 Lansdowne has 10 ping pong tables to enjoy and Jerry Remy’s at 1265 Boylston has several massive tv’s or “screen monsters” for your viewing pleasure, to name a couple.

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