Petition to make opening day a national holiday reaches 100,000 signature goal

Mark Townsend

The push to make opening day a recognized national holiday is headed to Washington D.C. after the official White House petition reached its 100,000 signature goal on Friday.

Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith and Budweiser teamed up to begin their ambitious opening day campaign on Feb. 24, but they needed those 100,000 signatures by March 26 to make it happen. With four days left to spare, their goal was met on Friday as the 100,000th signature was officially recorded, which means President Barack Obama will at the very least have to acknowledge its existence.

Here's the person claiming ownership of that 100,000th signature.

Of course, there's a legitimate hope by many that President Obama, a well known baseball fan, will do more than acknowledge the petition and actually take action. It's probably a long shot, but a recent survey showing that 22.2 million Americans have admitted to taking a vacation day or calling in sick to watch opening day festivities suggests there's not a lot of work getting done on that day anyway.

A decision that won't change how the day is viewed one way or the other, but making it official would certainly make planning it more convenient. Who doesn't want a little more convenience?

Of course, MLB could do their part in making it more convenient by scheduling one uniform opening day every season instead of staggering it across multiple days and in some cases multiple countries. But most would probably say they recognize the first full slate of games, usually the first Monday of the season, as the official opener.

We'll let you how the petition fares once it reaches the president's desk. For now, pat yourself on the back, baseball fans. Your voice has been heard.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!