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Happy Friday Cincinnati! If you’re looking for something unique to do this weekend, how about joining your friends from 1230AM WDBZ The Buzz for the annual Civil Rights Game Weekend which kicks off Friday, May 14th through Sunday, May 16th at a variety of city center locations.

Energize the spirit of hope and spirit of Cincinnati with tons of great events and special moments as we celebrate our special guests Willie Mays, Billie Jean King and Harry Belafonte who will each be honored accordingly at the MLB Beacon Awards during Civil Rights Weekend, sponsored in part by Gilette. Pick your favorite events and have the family tag along with you all weekend long. See the entire Civil Rights Game Weekend schedule below for additional details.


Join us for the “Baseball & The Civil Rights Movement” roundtable discussion from 4:00 to 5:30PM at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. This event is free and open to the public.

Panelists and participants scheduled to appear include MLB Hall of Famer and Cincinnati Reds legend Joe Morgan, MLB Network analyst and Cincinnati Reds legend Barry Larkin, Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, Olympic gold medalist and tennis legend Zina Garrison and Special Assistant to the U.S. Secretary of Defense/White Houst Liaison Michelle Jones. The roundtable discussion will be moderated by Harvard Law School professor Charles Ogletree.

James Hirsch, author of the best-selling biography Willie Mays: The Life,The Legend, will be signing copies of his book from 4:30 to 6:30PM at the Reds’ Hall of Fame and during the 2nd to 4th innings at the Community Corner inside the Great American Ball Park.

Don’t forget about the big game, the Reds vs. Cardinals, beginning at 7:10PM with post-game fireworks to light up the night sky.


After the excitement of Friday night’s baseball game, continue the celebration at the MLB Beacon Awards Luncheon beginning at 12 noon and held at the Duke Energy Convention Center. Morning registration begins at 10:30AM and the doors will open at 11:30AM. Special guests Willie Mays, Billie Jean King and Harry Belafonte will each be honored as beacons of life, change and hope respectively.

The awards luncheon recognizes a series of individuals whose lives are emblematic of the spirit of the Civil Rights Movement. Multiple Grammy Award-winning songstress Robert Flack will bring the house down with a special live performance. Former Atlanta Mayor, Congressman and United States Ambassador to the United Nations Andrew Young will deliver the afternoon’s keynote speech. ESPN’s SportsCenter anchor Sage Steele will serve as the mistress of ceremonies for the luncheon as well. In addition to the MLB Beacon Awards recipients, renowned recording artist and actress Lena Horne, who passed away earlier this week, and Rachel Robinson, widow of the late great Jackie Robinson, and founder of the Jackie Robinson Foundation, will also be honored.

There will also be a special tribute to the members of the sit-in at the Greensboro, NC Woolworth lunch counter in 1960 during Saturday afternoon’s MLB Beacon Awards Luncheon. Net proceeds from the MLB Beacon Awards Luncheon will benefit the Reds Community Fund, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and the Major League Baseball Urban Youth Foundation.

Speaking of youth, if there are little ones in your family who won’t want to sit still during the luncheon, you might want to send them on over to Fountain Square for Saturday’s Youth Summit and MLB “You Wanna Play?” festivities from 12 noon to 7:00PM. This event is free and open to the public.

The Youth Summit features a special Q&A session beginning at 2:30PM with MLB Network analyst and former All-Star Harold Reynolds, MLB Network analyst and Cincinnati Reds legend Barry Larkin, teen sax sensation BK Jackson, Reds stars Brandon Phillips and Joey Votto, Cardinals 3B Felipe Lopez and West Point graduate and former Reds minor leaguer Capt. Josh Holden.

Of course, all your friends from Radio One will be present so don’t forget to look for us. Come on down with the kids, have a hot dog and chips or chat with our team all day long as we support the youth attending this weekend’s Civil Rights Game activities.

The afternoon of young fun doesn’t stop there. Over 2,000 children, coaches, community partners and sponsors are planning t0 march from Fountain Square to Great American Ball Park during the Delta Youth Baseball March beginning at 5:00PM.

After the crowd has settled, join the fun back at the Great American Ball Park for the chance to see the Reds take on the Cardinals once again at 7:10PM. Be sure to keep your eyes open for the Chuck Harmon Mesh Jersey Giveaway during the game on Saturday evening.

Also during the game, both teams will be wearing 1947 throwback uniforms recognizing Jackie Robinson’s rookie year. Once again, multiple Grammy Award-winning singer Roberta Flack will perform alongside platinum recording artist Jeffrey Osborne during Saturday’s pre-game ceremonies. Hall of Famer Ernie Banks will throw out the ceremonial first pitch and the U.S. Army “Golden Knights” will perform a pre-game aerial.


Sunday things calm down, but only a bit, as we gear up for the final game with the Reds vs. the Cardinals beginning at 1:10PM. There’s another chance to win big with the Brandon Phillips Kids Mesh Jersey Giveaway during the game as well. Veterans of the Negro Leagues will have a chance to participate in a special meet-and-greet with fans and sign autographs from 11:30AM to 1:30PM inside the Reds’Hall of Fame.

Don’t forget to keep your eyes out for us all weekend long. Post your comments on what you saw and what you’ve enjoyed during the Civil Rights Game Weekend right here on our sites. We’ll be looking for you!

*Schedule of events subject to change without prior notification. Stay tuned t0 and 1230AM WDBZ The Buzz all weekend long for updates, recaps and more news as we celebrate Civil Rights Game Weekend together.

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