Zobrist among headliners at Cubs Convention

J-Hey, Lackey to be on hand with former greats Sandberg, Jenkins

Zobrist among headliners at Cubs Convention

CHICAGO -- New Cubs Ben Zobrist, Jason Heyward, John Lackey, and Adam Warren will attend the 31st Cubs Convention on Jan. 15-17, which will feature a seminar with Hall of Famers Ryne Sandberg, Fergie Jenkins and Billy Williams.

National League Manager of the Year Joe Maddon, his coaching staff and players from the current roster, including 2015 NL Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta and NL Rookie of the Year Kris Bryant, will take part in the winter fan fest at the Sheraton Grand Chicago.

The opening ceremony will be on Jan. 15 at 6 p.m. CT, beginning with player introductions. Children 16-and-under will be given special access to the event. After the ceremony, players and guests will take part in a surprise autograph signing game.

On the second day, fans can take part in "Cubs Feud" and "Cubs Jeopardy" sessions, as well as seminars on baseball management with president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer, and get a business operations update. Maddon and his staff will have a question and answer session, and there will be a kids only press conference presented by Advocate Children's Hospital.

On Jan. 17, the program will conclude with a seminar on the Cubs' Minor League system.

Bryant, Javier Baez, Addison Russell and Kyle Schwarber will share their first-season experiences in the big leagues with fans during the "Rock Star Rookies" panel presented by Wintrust. Arrieta and Jenkins will join another Cy Young Award winner, Rick Sutcliffe, to talk about their award-winning seasons.

Kids can visit Clark's Clubhouse, which will host games, face painting, caricatures, balloon artists, a coloring station, inflatable T-ball and inflatable speed pitch.

Cubs Charities will feature a variety of items and opportunities for sale, including private player meet-and-greets, baseballs, ball cubes, autographed mystery baseballs, grab bags and a garage sale. The Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation also will host a raffle during the convention.

Guests can visit a dedicated social media area, which will feature giveaways, charging stations, an interactive photo print station and special player visits.

Other current Cubs who will take part include Jon Lester, Miguel Montero, Arismendy Alcantara, Neil Ramirez, Clayton Richard, Dallas Beeler, Rizzo, Hector Rondon, David Ross, Trevor Cahill, Zac Rosscup, Jeimer Candelario, Carl Edwards Jr., Justin Grimm, Jorge Soler, Jason Hammel, Pedro Strop, Kyle Hendricks, Matt Szczur, Dan Vogelbach, Pierce Johnson, Eric Jokisch, and Travis Wood.

Cubs alum who will attend include Ryan Dempster, John Baker, Bobby Dernier, Scott Eyre, Randy Hundley, Jon Lieber, Ted Lilly, Bill Madlock, Dave Otto, Scott Sanderson, Lee Smith, Tim Stoddard, Steve Trout and Kerry Wood. Broadcasters Len Kasper, Jim Deshaies, Ron Coomer and Pat Hughes also will take part.

A percentage of the proceeds from the Cubs Convention benefits Cubs Charities. To date, the event has raised more than $4 million for Cubs Charities.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.