The Chicago Cubs will be inducted into the inaugural class of The National Gay & Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame this evening, joining other organizations, former pro sports officials, activists, journalists, retired athletes and current athletes. The National Gay & Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame selected the Cubs for being the first professional male sports team to place an ad in a gay newspaper in the country in 2000; hosting Gay Games VII at Wrigley Field in 2006; the first professional male sports team to have a float in an LGBT pride parade in 2010; and first team in Major League Baseball with an openly gay owner-Chicago Cubs board member and Chicago Cubs Charities chair Laura Ricketts.
"We are honored to be included in the inaugural class of the National Gay & Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame," said Laura Ricketts. "When you look at the other impressive and talented individuals who were selected for this great distinction, we feel very special to be included among these great pioneers in sports."
Other inductees in the inaugural class are Anheuser-Busch, Brendon Ayanbadejo, Glenn Burke, Ben Cohen, Jason Collins, Orlando Cruz, Chuck Dima, Justin Fashanu, Gay Games, Andrew Goldstein, LZ Granderson, International Gay Rodeo Association (IGRA), Christina Kahrl, Billie Jean King, Chris Kluwe, Dave Kopay, Greg Louganis, Martina Navratilova, Outsports.com, Dave Pallone, Jerry Pritikin, Renee Richards, Patty Sheehan, Dr. Tom Waddell and Johnny Weir.
The induction of the first honorees occurs tonight during a ceremony at the Center on Halsted. Tickets, available as VIP or general admission, are available at www.gayandlesbiansports.com. VIP tickets are $50 and include a seat in the Hoover-Leppen Theatre and a VIP meet-and-greet reception. General admission tickets are $25 and include a reception and viewing on TVs outside the theater. Both tickets will include a hosted bar and food. The VIP meet-and-greet reception goes from 5-6 p.m. The general reception takes place from 6-7 p.m., while the induction ceremony takes place from 7-8:30 p.m.
The induction ceremony will be held in conjunction with tomorrow's annual "Out at Wrigley" game-the nation's largest "Gay Day" at a major league sporting event. Tickets for the Aug. 3 "Out at Wrigley" event can be purchased in the Terrace Reserve or all-inclusive Budweiser Patio at www.outatwrigley.com. Budweiser Patio tickets include a free ticket to tonight's HOF Induction Ceremony. Wrigley Field will fly two rainbow flags over Wrigley Field Saturday, while Adam LeBlanc, winner of the "Out at Wrigley" Anthem Finals, will perform the National Anthem.