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Canaries Return to Birdcage

Canaries Name Change
Jeff Harkness/ESPN 99.1

I can maybe say it now: I never liked the name “Sioux Falls Fighting Pheasants.”

Never. Not even a little bit.

Ownership has announced that the “Pheasants” name is gone, and the “Canaries” are back.

“Canaries” goes back many, many years in Sioux Falls, back to when the uniforms were yellow in maybe the early 1900s and they played at the old East Side Athletic Field, at the east end of the 10th Street viaduct at Franklin Avenue.

There’s a lot of baseball history connected with “Pheasants,” but it’s all in Aberdeen.

Sharon and I had a mini-ticket plan with the Canaries for many years, and we were big fans. Not season ticket holder fans, but good baseball fans nonetheless. But  after the team was sold and the name changed, nobody even tried to get us interested.

Sure, maybe those records went with the previous owners, but when I inquired, I was told we could buy a combination of baseball and hockey tickets. We wanted baseball tickets.

I even spent a season on the Canaries Fan Advisory Board, and loved it. Management would bounce some fan-related ideas off us, and we’d give some feedback and generally felt more involved.

And if the team was the Pheasants for three seasons, it only seems longer.

But now, the Canaries name is back, and we just might be, too.

No, it’s not just the team name–we’re not that shallow. A lot of it boils down to attitude toward the fans, and part of it for me is non-alcoholic beer.

Do you hear me, management? Non-alcoholic beer! NA beer!

Batter up! Let’s play some ball!

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