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04/01/2009 5:00 PM ET
San Francisco Giants unveil plans for a GREEN 2009 season
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During its annual Media Open House today, the San Francisco Giants announced their plans for the 2009 season, which include an Opening Day salute to a national hero, a National Anthem performance by an American Idol winner, the celebration of a Cy-Young Award winner, a reunion of the 1989 National League Champions and the greening of, not only a ballpark, but also a Garlic Fries stand.

On Tuesday, April 7, the Giants will officially embark on their 51st season in San Francisco, 126th campaign in Major League Baseball and 10th season at AT&T Park, when they face the Milwaukee Brewers at 1:05 p.m. In a game known for its on field heroes and their ability to provide fans with magical moments and memories, the Giants will pay tribute to a national hero whose instincts and talents resulted in the saving of 155 lives and countless more when he miraculously landed Flight 1549 in New York's Hudson River earlier this year. Captain Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger III, a resident of Danville, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch, and American Idol winner Taylor Hicks will perform the National Anthem.

The AT&T Opening Series will continue with Opening Night on Wednesday, April 8, when National League Cy-Young Award Winner Tim Lincecum is presented with his Cy-Young Award in a pre-game ceremony. There will also be a post-game fireworks show.

In keeping with its strong tradition of honoring its past, on Saturday, June 13th, the Giants will reunite the 1989 National League Championship team, courtesy of Diamond Foods, to mark the 20th anniversary of their World Series season, postponed for 10 days by a 7.1 earthquake. Some of the memorable Giants invited to attend the pre-game festivities include Will Clark, Kevin Mitchell, Matt Williams, Robby Thompson, Dave Dravecky, Rick Reuschel, Scott Garrelts, Craig Leffert, Jeff Brantley, Ken Oberkfell, Chris Speier, Kirt Manwaring, Candy Maldonado and Skipper Roger Craig.

The Giants are committed to making AT&T Park the greenest ballpark in the country and are pursuing a number of initiatives, many of them in partnership with Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E). This includes the creation of the ballpark's first green garlic fries stand and making AT&T Park the first Major League ballpark to receive U.S Green Building Council certification for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Existing Buildings, Operations and Maintenance (EBO&M).

Under the leadership of PG&E, and with partners Linc Facility Services, Centerplate, Henny Penny and Coca-Cola, this 550-square foot sustainable stand was completely retrofitted with Henny Penny Open Fryers, which reduce gas consumption by 32 percent; cut utility cost by more than half and automatically reduce cooking oil consumption by 12 percent. Coca-Cola's Energy Management System Cooler saves up to 35 percent more energy than traditional models. The standard lights were replaced with high lumen lights and ballast lamp starters, which are the most efficient tube (T8) lights and starters available and use 36.5 percent less electricity. The signage in the stand, provided by EcoSignWorks.com, is made on 100 percent biodegradable and recyclable materials. The drink cups are recyclable and the paper boats and carry trays are compostable. The paint used to repaint the stand "green" is environmentally friendly. Approximately, 800 pounds of garlic fries are prepared in this stand per game, and the stands new energy efficient appliances are estimated to save enough energy to fry an additional 110 tons of garlic fries.

The Giants are also working in partnership with PG&E and Linc Facility Services to make AT&T Park the FIRST major league ballpark to receive U.S. Green Building Council certification for LEED EBO&M. The certification process is expected to be completed within the year and will recognize the Giants and its partners' efforts to achieve sustainability and efficiencies in the areas of human and environmental health -- including sustainable sites; water efficiency; energy and atmosphere; materials and resources; indoor environmental quality; and innovation in operations.

In addition to its numerous greening programs, the Giants will introduce a new department at AT&T Park this season - The GREEN TEAM. The Green Team will proactively work with ballpark guests to assist with their recycling and composting of trash. The ballpark will increase its number of recyclable containers by 25 percent and during the 7th Inning Stretch fans will be asked to pass their trash to the Green Team members for recycling.

This year's Earth Day, April 22 vs. Padres, will be sponsored by Esurance in association with PG&E and the California Academy of Sciences. Fans will receive a reusable, fabric grocery bag and friendly reminders of what we all can do to sustain a healthy environment will be delivered by Giants players, with footage from the newly renovated California Academy of Sciences.

"Since we opened AT&T Park in 2000, improvements in energy efficiency and creating an environmentally friendly atmosphere have been one of our top priorities. From our initial focus to make AT&T Park the most transit friendly ballpark in the country to our more recent partnering with PG&E to become the first MLB ballpark to install a solar system, we continue our commitment to creating the most innovative, sustainable initiatives and programs in baseball," said Larry Baer, Giants President and Chief Operating Officer.

The fan experience is always of utmost importance to the Giants, and there will many notable giveaways in 2009. This includes bobbleheads of Tim Lincecum, Brian Wilson and Jon Miller, a Brian Wilson designed t-shirt and a monogrammed SF Giants logo tie. For all Friday and Saturday evening games, the Giants will open Willie Mays Gate three hours before game time, instead of the traditional two hours, so fans can watch all of the Giants Batting Practice. Fans will also notice the Giants Orange and Black Attack - a group of Giants ambassadors dedicated to enhancing the overall fan experience. They will pass out free t-shirts and other giveaway items and reward fans wearing their Giants gear.

The Media Open House also featured the traditional sampling of the new and unique food offerings at AT&T Park, which include a bacon wrapped hot dog from Tres Agaves, Blue Cheese fries at Murph's Clubhouse Pub and the introduction of value meals and individual value items (hot dog, soda, peanuts, popcorn and ice cream).

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