Baseball: Fans vote to put odd eats on Michigan ballpark menu
COMSTOCK PARK, Mich. — Buy me some peanuts and ... Twinkie cheese dogs?
Peanuts are among the standard fare at Fifth Third Ballpark in suburban Grand Rapids. But the cheese-coated wiener stuck into the spongy cake with creamy filling will be available only if West Michigan Whitecaps fans vote it onto the menu.
The Detroit Tigers affiliate in the Class A Midwest League on Feb. 9 began soliciting online votes for 10 concession-stand concoctions, with the winner to be announced next month.
Whitecaps officials, thinking outside the basepaths, have offered unusual fan fare for the past few years, including Deep-Fried Twinkies and the four-pound, 4,800-calorie Fifth Third Burger, which made its debut last season. It remains on the menu in 2010, although the team's Web site doesn't mention whether the price is still $20.
Poutine, a French Canadian side dish consisting of fries, fried cheese curds and gravy, got Bob Denham's vote. He said in a story posted on the site that he and several fellow Canadians enjoy Poutine during their annual trips to Grand Rapids, but said he might bring unspecified "fixings" to add to the U.S. version.
"Alert the paramedics," Denham said. "This is not for sissies."
Other candidates for the Whitecaps 2010 menu include:
— the Cudighi Yooper Sandwich. Cudighi, a spicy sausage popular in the Upper Peninsula, rests on a bun beneath layers of cheese, pizza sauce, peppers and onions.
— Chocolate Covered Bacon, which has been around a few years and has been offered at, among other places, the Wisconsin and Minnesota state fairs. But the Whitecaps say Fifth Third could be the first ballpark to offer it as a menu item.
— The Pink Panther, a hot dog bun filled with pink cotton candy and covered with frosting. Root beer syrup drizzled over the top is optional.
The Whitecaps open the 2010 on April 11 by hosting the Midwest League champion Fort Wayne Tincaps.