Baseball is back: this week on The Green Room

Mar 3, 2016

Longtime Detroit Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell.
Credit mwlguide via Wikimedia Commons

Spring is in the air! 

Or, at least Spring Training is in the air.

Before the first pitch, baseball fans expect to hear the national anthem performed by countless individuals throughout the long season.

And for the past decade, Judy Harrison has sung the national anthem more than anyone else at Traverse City Beach Bums games. She has one big fear— that when everybody is concentrated on her, she’ll mess up the words to the song. She says the key to make sure that doesn’t happen, is to just focus on the flag.

“When I’m looking at the flag and I concentrate on the flag,” says Harrison, “I really feel like that’s when I’m going to for sure get those right words.”

Judy Harrison has a strong voice that has performed the anthem hundreds of times, but she especially likes when she get’s help from he crowd.

“When there’s a really large crowd and they’re all singing, oh it’s so powerful,” she says. “It’s really incredible.”

For many years, if you were in Detroit, the next voice you would hear after the national anthem would be the legendary broadcaster Ernie Harwell. 

Interlochen Arts Academy history teacher Brian McCall grew up with Harwell on the radio, and shares some memories of baseball and family.