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The Unconventional Cubs Party

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It was all for fun and raised money for a good cause.

Cubs fans nervously watch Game 7, three months after winning.
Danny Rockett

After burning both ends of the candle at Cubs Convention from Friday’s Opening Ceremonies into the Saturday morning sessions, I headed back to my apartment in Uptown to write up Saturday’s events so as to be at GMan Tavern near Wrigley Field by 3:30 p.m. Cubs podcast Ivy Envy and I had decided to throw a joint event coinciding with Cubs Convention weekend, because so many fans couldn’t get tickets. The party was a rousing success as we raised nearly $700 for Cubs Charities!

The evening kicked off with a live recording of the Ivy Envy podcast in which hosts Corey, Andy, and Kurt reviewed their over/under predictions for the 2016 Cubs season with Awesome 80’s podcast host Michael Carlson. Corey and Andy tied, but any prediction concerning Kyle Schwarber was incredibly over-estimated, possibly skewing the numbers.

Ivy Envy Live Podcasting
Danny Rockett

Kurt had brought his Blu-Ray player and a certain DVD of a particular game in which the Cubs became World Series Champions. We put on said game on the stage projector and I took to the stage with my guitar. With the way the stage and projector is set up, the image projected is also shown on anybody standing on the stage. I was in the middle of my John Lackey song “I Didn’t Come Here For a Haircut” when the concert crowd began to boo. Sure, I had missed the high note in the second chorus a bit, but boo me? It was then I turned around and saw the aftermath of Kyle Schwarber being thrown out at second base. Until Anthony Rizzo joins my band playing keyboards, this is as close as I’ve come to jamming with him.

Rockett and Rizz
Heather Zomayah

After playing seven or eight of my silly baseball songs, we all watched the game together for a bit, reliving each moment as if it were happening now. Of course it helps to know the ending, and we certainly wouldn’t be watching the game if the Cubs had lost.

We had asked everyone coming to the party to bring a “White Elephant” gift to exchange with each other. Some gifts were pretty good, actually, like brand new Cubs T-Shirts, a leather Cubs wallet and a hilariously ironic 1984 Cubs World Series Champions hat. Yet other gifts’ only value was of the entertainment variety. One gift recipient got an egg from podcaster Corey Fineran’s chickens as part of his Cubs White Elephant package, and I got this handsome Kosuke Fukudome plaque.

Kosuke Fukudome Plaque
Danny Rockett

We then continued on to the raffle portion of the evening featuring Cubs gifts of actual value donated by “Unconventional” party-goers, including a signed Mark Prior jersey, a John Baker bobblehead, a Cubs World Series Champion Desk Plaque, some Cubs artwork by artist Matt Kammerer and a package of Ivy Envy Swag. The best thing about the raffle is that it was all unplanned, Cubs fans just sent and brought the valuable items to raise money for Cubs Charities. It was a crowdsourced operation and everybody there contributed something.

Cubs Songstress Katie Day then finished off the evening with her Cubs anthems “We Got the Fire” and “By The Lakeside” plus a set of her original music. As I had experienced earlier in the evening, Katie had the misfortune of playing on stage as Rajai Davis hit the game tying home run, turning the crowd singing along with her song into anguished cries of false despair.

(Video: Chase McClure)

Towards the end of Katie’s set came the rain. The rain delay that is. We paused the game, and in an impromptu act fueled by beer, I acted out what I thought might have been Jason Heyward’s infamous locker room speech.

(Video: Chase McClure)

Katie ended her set just in time for the Cubs to win the World Series all over again!

(Video: Chase McClure)

Simply put, we had a great time and we raised money for a great cause. GMan Tavern was a wonderful host and I hope anyone reading this comes out to the next one. Because this was too much fun not to do again.

Stay tuned for my final installment about Cubs Convention and what it feels like to see your boyhood heroes, the 1984 Cubs, at 9 a.m. after two straight nights of Cubs-related mayhem.

Here are some more pics of the party from Beth Round, Heather Zomayah and Corey Fineran.