Cooperstown gearing up for a big Hall of Fame weekend in 2014

By Gary Liberatore

(WKTV) - Christmas for many business owners in Cooperstown isn't in a few weeks -- but rather in July.

That's when the Baseball Hall of Fame will induct the 2014 class, and that includes former New York Yankees Manager Joe Torre.

"I grew up watching Joe Torre playing for the Cardinals," said Stan Finch of Oneonta. "Then all those championships with the Yankees. Yep, even though you're a Red Sox fan, you still like Joe Torre."

You know you're popular when even as a Yankee, Red Sox fans root for you. And that popularity of Joe Torre will spill over to the aisles of all the business on Main Street in Cooperstown.

Some owners say they believe because this past year's induction class was not such a notable one. Many fans specifically waited to come to Cooperstown to see the Class of 2014.

"The Hall of Fame is having a big anniversary this year, too, so maybe that's why the held back. I don't really know," said Maria Hill, owner of Mickey's Place. "I think it will be exciting. Joe Torre has a good reputation and is a good guy."

Patricia Szarpa, the executive director of the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce says the 2013 induction weekend was a very low drawing one, but this one could come close -- if not top -- the all-time weekend. As it's also the Hall of Fame's 75th anniversary in 2014, there will be a huge concert that week as well.

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