HOUSTON, TX - On Friday night, the Houston Astros will return to the field from the All-Star Break with a bang with the start of an exciting, six-game homestand during which they will host the Seattle Mariners (July 19-21) and Oakland A's (July 22-24).
Friday, July 19 - 7:10 p.m. vs. Seattle
Big and Bright Friday Nights return with a postgame fireworks show, presented by Marathon Oil Corporation, following Friday night's game vs. the Mariners. This week's show will include a lively and entertaining country music theme. Prior to the fireworks show, the Long Haul Bombers will take the field for an impressive Home Run Derby as part of their Stadium Power Tour. As always, the Astros players will wear the popular orange jerseys for the game.
Friday night will also feature the Astros debut of "Dollar Dog Night", presented by H-E-B, where fans can purchase an unlimited number of hot dogs at $1.00 each while supplies last (limit of four per person per concession visit).
Additionally, members of the VETSports softball team will take the field with the Astros players on Friday night for the national anthem. The VETSports' mission is to help wounded veterans overcome their injuries through adaptive sports and rehabilitation programs.
Saturday, July 20 - 6:10 p.m. vs. Seattle
The popular "Faith and Family Night" returns on Saturday with another inspiring, free concert following the game. This year's guest performers will be the popular Christian Contemporary band, Tenth Avenue North, who have had several Top 10 hits on the Billboard Christian Songs chart. Additionally, they were named "New Artist of the Year" at the 40th GMA Dove Awards in April of 2009. Prior to the concert, Astros President Reid Ryan will take the stage to welcome the fans. Longtime Astros broadcaster Bill Brown will then emcee a testimony panel consisting of Astros players Brandon Barnes, Trevor Crowe, and Justin Maxwell
A game ticket for Saturday night's game vs. the Mariners is required for the postgame concert, which will take place on the field at Minute Maid Park.
Blood Drive: Houston Methodist's Eileen Murphree McMillin Blood Center and the Houston Astros will host a blood drive on Saturday from 2-7:00 p.m. at Minute Maid Park (Union Station). Eligible donors are encouraged to come out to the ball game and share the gift of life by donating blood. With a successful blood donation, donors will receive a Houston Astros T-shirt.
Sunday, July 21 - 1:10 p.m. vs. Seattle
Baseball Tomorrow Fund Equipment Drive: In support of the ongoing commitment from Major League Baseball, its Clubs and the players, to increase opportunities for youth participation in baseball and softball, the Houston Astros are teaming up with the Baseball Tomorrow Fund (BTF) to host an Equipment Collection Drive during the Astros-Mariners series at Minute Maid Park. On Sunday, fans are encouraged to donate new and used equipment, which will benefit kids at the Astros Urban Youth Academy.
In conjunction with the equipment drive, the BTF will award a grant of $5,000 to the Special Olympics Texas of Greater Houston for the purchase of new supplies and equipment. Astros outfielder Justin Maxwell, who is in his first year as a BTF Player Ambassador, will be on hand to present a ceremonial check to representatives from the Special Olympics Texas of Greater Houston during Sunday's pre-game ceremony.
Methodist Family Day: The Astros will host more than 15,000 Houston Methodist Hospital employees and their families at Sunday afternoon's game. Methodist is showing appreciation to its employees for their dedication to its patients and to the hospital. The day will include Methodist's longest-tenured employee (53 years) throwing out the first pitch. Methodist employees will also read the starting lineups and sing God Bless America.
For ticket information, call 1-877-9ASTROS or visit www.astros.com/tickets.