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All-Star Game community events set to begin in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI -- The 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile is still a week away, but the festivities will begin this week, starting on Wednesday.

The T-Mobile All-Star FanFest and the Budweiser MLB All-Star Concert featuring Ariana Grande highlight the wide array of community events leading up to the opening pitch of the game on July 14.

CINCINNATI -- The 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile is still a week away, but the festivities will begin this week, starting on Wednesday.

The T-Mobile All-Star FanFest and the Budweiser MLB All-Star Concert featuring Ariana Grande highlight the wide array of community events leading up to the opening pitch of the game on July 14.

FanFest starts up Friday and runs until Tuesday, with a number of baseball-related activities. Barry Larkin, Dave Winfield, Vlad Guerrero and Pedro Martinez are just a few of the former Major League players who will be on hand to lead instructional drills during the event at the Duke Energy Convention Center.

The concert will take place at Paul Brown Stadium on Saturday at 8 p.m. -- gates open at 5 p.m. Tickets for the concert were given away for free on June 18, and it took less than five minutes before they were all claimed.

Here's a complete list of all the community events coming up:

Wednesday, July 8

10:30 a.m. -- Bank of America All-Star Youth Clinic with Boys & Girls Club at the P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy: Major League Hall of Famer Johnny Bench and Reds Hall of Famer George Foster will help lead a clinic for more than 100 pre-selected local Boys & Girls Club members.

3 p.m. -- MLB Cincinnati Reds Howell All-Star Field in Dayton: Chaminade Juliene High School and other local youth baseball programs will get a newly renovated field. The renovation project included regrading the field, updating existing outfield fencing, adding a new scoreboard, restoring outdated bleachers, adding an ADA access path, and upgrading the press box and concession area. The renovated field is located at 555 N. Hyatt Street in Tipp City, Ohio.

Thursday, July 9

12 p.m. -- Queensgate All-Star Field Dedication with The Scotts Company: The Queensgate Field received upgraded bleachers, dugouts, outfield fencing, scoreboard and landscaping. It's located at 748 Richmond Street in Cincinnati.

3 p.m. -- P&G Cincinnati Zoo & Reds Community Fund Community Makeover: Seven Hills Neighborhood Houses, P&G All-Star Park and Dyer All-Star Fields: More than 300 P&G and Cincinnati Zoo volunteers will help complete makeover projects at the Seven Hills Neighborhood Houses, a large playground area at the vacant Sands School space and the nearby Dyer Baseball Fields.

6 p.m. -- Guinness World Records Largest Game of Catch at P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy: This event is open to the general public, but only those ages 8-18 and have previously registered are eligible to participate in the record-setting attempt. Participants will receive a T-shirt, baseball and snacks during the event.

Friday, July 10

11 a.m. -- Ron Oester Field at Withrow All-Star Complex Dedication: Ron Oester Field at Withrow All-Star Complex will receive new grass baseball infield, upgraded irrigation, new outfield fencing, new batting cages, updated dugouts and backstops, a new scoreboard, and new archways to the baseball and softball fields. The complex is located at 2488 Madison Road in Cincinnati.

12 p.m. -- Wiffle Ball Quarterfinals at the P&G Reds Urban Youth Academy

3:30 p.m. -- Miracle League Game at Great American Ball Park: Special needs children from the Cincinnati Recreation Commission Miracle League and the Greater Miami Valley YMCA Youth Miracle League will play a one-inning game on the outfield grass at Great American Ball Park.

6:30 p.m. -- Don Johnson All-Star Field Dedication at the P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy: Field 2 of P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy was recently renovated with a turf field by the Reds and MLB. The event will also serve as the opening ceremony of the Jr. RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) Classic.

Saturday, July 11

9 a.m. -- The Color Run MLB All-Star 5K presented by NikeMLB and The Color Run are partnering up -- participants will be covered in colored powder as they run through an All-Star-themed course that will feature appearances by MLB legends, mascots and other special guests. The Finish Festival will take place following the race, featuring music, giveaways and contests at Sawyer Point Park.

9 a.m. -- TeamSmile Dental Screening Event, supported by Church & Dwight Co., Inc., maker of Arm & Hammer and OxiClean products: Approximately 300 children will receive $150,000 worth of free dental preventative care, education and treatment.

12:30 p.m. -- Jr. RBI Classic Community Service Event/The Giving Fields in Melbourne, Ky.: Participants in the 2015 Jr. RBI Classic will participate in community service through The Giving Fields, a community farm that provides fresh produce for Northern Kentucky food pantries and soup kitchens.

2 p.m. -- TVCA Veteran In-Processing (VIP) and Welcome Center: Together, MLB, the Reds and Tristate Veterans Community Alliance will create a new veterans reintegration center at the CityLink Center in Cincinnati.

5:30 p.m. -- Make-A-Wish Welcome Reception: Four children, who are battling life-threatening illness, and their families will be in the Queen City as honored guests for All-Star Week.

Sunday, July 12

9 a.m. -- All-Star Youth Hitting Challenge: The event is new for All-Star Week, and will take place at Marge Schott Field at University of Cincinnati. The challenge is open to local 10-16 year olds, and is free of charge. The event includes a hitting and bunting station, and the winners of each age groups will receive two tickets to the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders on July 13 at Great American Ball Park.

2 p.m. -- Cincinnati Children's Hospital Waiting Room Unveil/Starlight Fun Center Donation: The waiting room for the Pediatric Primary Care Center underwent significant renovations. Additionally, a new Fun Center mobile entertainment unit, containing the latest gaming system built to roll bedside in hospitals, will be donated by MLB and the Reds to the Cincinnati Children's Hospital.

Monday, July 13

10 a.m. -- MLB Cincinnati Reds Meinken All-Star Field in Covington, Ky.: The field received a new full synthetic field, fencing, batting cages, upgrades to the scoreboard and renovations to the dugouts. The field is located on Eastern Avenue in Covington.

Tuesday, July 14

10 a.m. -- Boys & Girls Club Activity Room Dedication, Sheakley Boys & Girls Club: MLB and the Reds have contributed to the construction of a new 17,000-square-foot facility. The donation directly funded a new activity center at the facility that features a multisport surface, batting cages and bleacher seating. The new facility is located in the Price Hill neighborhood.

1 p.m. -- The Red Carpet Parade: Starting at the Westin Hotel on 5th Street, the All-Stars will parade through downtown Cincinnati in Chevy vehicles to Great American Ball Park before the 2015 All-Star Game.

Robert Bondy is an associate reporter for