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Richmond: Trophy brings smiles to Civic Center

By Chris Treadway
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 at 5:51 pm in Richmond.

Richmond officials were all smiles Wednesday and definitely seeing the glass as at least half-full as hundreds of baseball fans came to Civic Center Plaza to see the San Francisco Giants World Series trophy.

“I think it’s great,” said Amanda Elliott, executive director of Richmond Main Street Initiative, the nonprofit group dedicated to revitalizing downtown.

“Anything that will draw folks to Richmond for something positive — and with the Giants being heroes — it’s great. If we can keep it going and bring things a little farther down Macdonald, that would be excellent.

The weather was perfect and the turnout was decent, considering that the trophy appearance came at mid-afternoon, but the crowd was smaller than it’s been elsewhere, including other stops in the East Bay. Some speculated that people unfamiliar with the city might have shied away or that Richmond is too close to Oakland Athletics territory.

Inside the auditorium, Vice Mayor Tom Butt watched the line of fans filing in as he recalled the role his firm had in the 1989 earthquake World Series between the Giants and the A’s.

“After the quake, they called us in to check out Candlestick Park and see if it was structurally safe,” he said. In appreciation the team gave Butt seats behind home plate for the series, but he added that he watched the games with mixed feelings because his kids were A’s fans.

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