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Opening Day Cookout 

Wayne Harvey

The Red Sox opened their season last night at Fenway Park against the Yankees, and Monday hundreds of baseball fans gathered for an opening day cookout in Bangor.It was put on by sports radio station WZON.Those on hand say it’s a great way to kick off the season.”It’s probably not quite the same as being at Fenway Park last night, no Steven Tyler, no Neil Diamond, and no Pedro throwing out the first pitch,” said WZON’s Jeff Solari. “But you know for Eastern Maine it’s the next best thing, free food and a bunch of people standing around talking Sox on a beautiful day, it’s a good deal.”This is the fourth year the event has been held at Tires, Batteries and Accessories on outer Hammond Street in Bangor, and the owner of TBA Al Belanger is a Yankee fan, and that earned him a trip to the dunk tank. “There are some other Yankees fans here but they don’t want to wear their hats and their shirts here.” (question) ” Take a lot of Ribbing from Sox fans today?” (Al Belanger) ” All Day Long” (question) ” Especially after the loss last night?” (Al Belanger) “Absolutely, but they forgot who was holding the trophy last year and it was not the Red Sox.”This season was the hot topic between bites of the hot dogs, and chips that were provided.”I’d like to see another bat in the lineup,” said Sox Fan Scott Adkins who was on hand during his lunch break. “Beckett I see some signs similar to last year no control over the off speed pitch, so you know if that comes around they’ve got an awesome pitching staff. I would compare that to anyone on the Yankees staff, you know Sabathia’s right up there for the Yankees but I think the Sox have a chance.”Fans from as far away as Greenville and East Millinocket came to the event which has been going for more than a decade now, said Solari. “I do really think that it gets bigger every year, More people come and we come up with new ideas like the Dunk Tank and everybody seems to enjoy it, so hopefully we won’t stop and as long as the Red Sox Nation stays rabid we’ll be here.”