The Orioles Birdland Community Heroes program honors and recognizes community heroes who inspire us through their spirited commitment to extend a hand in charity, service, hope, and harmony. This recognition honors the heroism of members of our extended Orioles community from all walks of life, occupations, and diverse backgrounds living in our region, our country, and abroad, who have distinguished themselves by selflessly working or volunteering in fields that care for, serve, teach, protect, and improve the lives of others, around the corner or around the globe, who are most in need.
The program honors designated Birdland Community Heroes for every weekend home game throughout the season. Selected honorees each received four game tickets, VIP parking, an award medal, and the opportunity be featured during an in-game ceremony on the video board at the conclusion of the fifth inning. During each Birdland Americana Weekend, the Orioles continued the tradition of celebrating American principles and ideals with the playing of classic, American songs during the seventh-inning stretch including "This Land Is Your Land" on Fridays, "America, The Beautiful" on Saturdays, and "God Bless America" on Sundays.
Below, meet our 2018 Birdland Heroes and seventh-inning stretch performers.
Birdland Americana Weekend - April 27-29
Michelle Miles; Program Manager from YouthWorks was honored for her work with Baltimore City's summer jobs program (YouthWorks) for residents age 14-21. The Orioles will also make a $2,500 donation to the Baltimore Office of Employment Development in support of the Birdland Community Heroes program.
- Youth Works: moed.baltimorecity.gov
Andy Weltlinger; Founder of Baltimore Urban Baseball Association (BUBA), was recognized for his dedication to rejuvenating baseball in Baltimore City, working with former college and professional baseball players to teach, educate, and mentor young players in year-round programming throughout the city. The Orioles will also make a $2,500 donation to BUBA in support of the Birdland Community Heroes program.
- BUBA: bubabaseball.org
Bob Wall; Baltimore City Recreation & Parks, Chief of Recreation, was recognized for his help in the community for the past 47 years, developing the Baltimore City Recreation & Parks Play Baseball program and supporting the Orioles RBI Program. The Orioles will also make a $2,500 donation to the Baltimore City Foundation's Youth Recreation Programs, in support of the Birdland Community Heroes program.
- Baltimore City Foundation Youth Recreation Programs: Bcrp.baltimorecity.gov
Birdland Americana Weekend - April 20-22
Wyatt Oroke; A humanities teacher at City Springs Elementary/Middle School in Baltimore. Oroke was recently recognized as an inspiring educator on The Ellen Show. The Orioles will also make a $2,500 donation to GLSEN Maryland in support of the Birdland Community Heroes program. GLSEN is the leading national organization championing LGBTQ issues in K-12 education.
- GLSEN Maryland: www.glsen.org/chapters/maryland
Barry Williams; Area President of Boy Scouts of America, Williams is being recognized as Saturday's Birdland Community Hero for his 50-plus year commitment to the Boy Scouts. The Orioles will also make a $2,500 donation to the Baltimore Area Council, Boy Scouts of America in support of the Birdland Community Heroes Program.
- Boy Scouts of America: www.baltimorebsa.org
Carmera Thomas; Baltimore Program Manager with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; for her dedication to bettering the environment in the Maryland area. Thomas is currently working to restore the oyster population in the Patapsco River, collaborating with community groups and youth to connect to the natural resources around Baltimore City.
- Chesapeake Bay Foundation: www.cbf.org
Birdland Americana Weekend - March 31-April 1, 2018
Lieutenant Colonel Jason Pasley; for his work with "Stop the Bleed" Program, an initiative to inform civilians how to recognize life-threatening bleeding and teach steps they can take to help save a life while waiting for trained medics to arrive.
- The Maryland State Committee on Trauma: www.mdcot.org
Liza Goldberg; for her dedication to protecting natural resources and developing new technology through her work at NASA Goddard's Biospheric Sciences Lab.
Conservation International: www.conservation.org