This morning the Pacific Life Holiday Bowl named former San Diego Padres pitcher, Randy Jones, Grand Marshal of the Port of San Diego Big Bay Balloon Parade presented by San Diego County Credit Union. The parade will march along Harbor Drive in downtown San Diego Thursday, December 27 at 10 a.m.
In addition to showcasing Jones as Grand Marshal, the parade will feature more giant character balloons than any parade in the country. Bob the Builder, Hello Kitty, Garfield and Thomas the Tank Engine are four of the 27 inflatables scheduled to soar in the 17th annual event. The 90-minute parade will air live locally on Channel 4 San Diego and re-broadcast five times. A 60-minute edited version of the parade will air nationally on the USA Network Friday, December 28 at 9am PST.
Randy Jones received many awards during his illustrious ten-year career as a pitcher. Jones was called up from the minors in 1973 at age 23. In 1975, he won the National League Comeback Player of the Year Award and finished the season with a National League best ERA of 2.24. In 1976, he would continue his success by winning the National Leagues Cy Young Award. He finished that year with a record of 22-14 and an ERA of 2.74.
The San Diego Padres honored Jones in 1997 when his uniform number, 35, was retired. This was followed by his induction into the San Diego Padres Hall of Fame in 1999. These honors are not only a tribute to Jones outstanding talent, but also his integrity, sportsmanship, character and enormous contributions to the community.
Jones continues to be active in San Diego, participating in baseball camps and clinics, serving as a spokesperson for the Padres, and operating the Randy Jones Baseball Barbeque at Petco Park.
Street-side viewing of the parade is free, though grandstand seats are available for $15. For information, visit www.PacificLifeHolidayBowl.com or call 619/283-5808.