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All you need is clove

5/16/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Craig Marks

On the Mark — By Craig Marks

Monday is National Garlic Day (observed).

A quick Google search will tell you that National Garlic Day was actually April 19, but the Akron Aeros will be honoring the plant that launched a thousand mints May 20. The Aeros’ game against the Bowie Baysox is being promoted as “‘Oh, Halitosis! Your Breath Stinks’— A Tribute to National Garlic Day.”

“It’s something to catch people’s attention, a little tongue-in-cheek and fun,” said Christina Shisler, director of promotions for the Aeros.

When fans enter the ballpark, they’ll receive a single Tic Tac. (Wouldn’t Orbit gum have been a better fit for an Aeros game?) There will be garlic-related activities throughout the game, some vampire related. It is also Wellness Night, and there will be health information available.

Thaxton’s Organic Garlic of Hudson is partnering with the Aeros and will have a table at the game.

“It’s a little unusual for a ball club to do it,” said Fred Thaxton, who has been growing garlic for 15 years. “I understand the new owner [Ken Babby] wants to have some fun events, so he’s going out on a limb.”

Thaxton’s favorite variety of garlic is Bogatyr, which has a kick to it.

“You’re chewing it, and you’re fine,” he said. “And then you swallow it, and you have a little bit of fire.”

Of course, garlic can pack a wallop for those nearby, with the degree of nastiness dependent on the garlic eater.

“For some people, it comes right through their pores,” he said. “And other people don’t give it off. It’s from the garlic in your bloodstream. You’re exhaling it, just like you would carbon dioxide. It’s not just that you have garlic in your teeth.”

But Thaxton says garlic has its health benefits.

“It helps with your circulatory system,” said Thaxton. “It’s a natural blood thinner. If heart disease is a problem, it helps out there.”

That the Aeros are giving bad breath a shout out (hopefully with hands covering mouth) is par for the course. Every Aeros home game has some promotion, such as the May 29 “Hitchcock Horrors,” celebrating the 50th anniversary of Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds.” Shisler says Homer, the Aeros’ pigeon mascot, will be involved (though she assured me the giant inflatable bird will not be attacking people).

“We’re all about fun and crazy, different promotions, and if they get people talking, all the better,” said Shisler.

One notable upcoming promotion is the Roger Dorn Snow Globe Giveaway. Dorn was the character played in the movie “Major League” by Corbin Bernsen, who has since made two movies in Akron.

Shisler says Bernsen plans to be at the game.

“He loves Akron, and he was very excited to come and help us with the promotion,” she said. “He really liked the idea of a snow globe. We talked about a few ideas, and we settled on that because he is an avid snow globe collector, and he doesn’t have one of himself.”

Roger Dorn Day isn’t until July 13. That’s enough time for Aeros fans going to the National Garlic Day event to catch their breath, and, if so desired, unleash their breath into the wild where it can do no harm.

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