Pottery pieces commemorated Twins' remarkable 1965 seasonWhat do Red Wing pottery collectors and Minnesota Twins fans have in common? A home plate, a double bowl and an ashtray - three pottery pieces that were made to celebrate the Twins' successes in 1965.
By: Ruth Nerhaugen, The Republican Eagle
What do Red Wing pottery collectors and Minnesota Twins fans have in common?
A home plate, a double bowl and an ashtray - three pottery pieces that were made to celebrate the Twins' successes in 1965.
No one knows more about those pieces than Clyde Doepner, a longtime Red Wing Collectors Society member and also full-time curator for the Minnesota Twins organization.
In conjunction with the 35th annual collectors society convention, Doepner will tell his stories Wednesday during a broadcast of the Twins ballgame on KWNG Radio, 105.9 FM.
The game and Doepner's stories will be heard at the society's annual brat feed, which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Red Wing Pottery parking lot adjacent to Loons and Ladyslippers on Old West Main Street. The brat feed is open to the public; there is a small charge.
The radio will broadcast interviews with Doepner and with Red Wing Collectors Society Executive Director Stacy Wegner between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
The Twins became Minnesota's baseball team in 1961. The franchise made it to the top just four years later with such luminaries as Tony Oliva and Zoilo Versalles in the lineup, according to an account by Doepner published in the collectors society newsletter.
The midseason All-Star Game that year was held in Minnesota. Six Twins were selected to play.
To celebrate the game, Red Wing produced a blue-green plate in the shape of a home plate that was embossed "1965 All Star Game, Metropolitan Stadium, Bloomington, Minnesota. 'Make your home plate Minnesota,' Karl Rolvaag, Governor."
A ball, bat and glove also were embossed on the souvenir plate, which Doepner said was given to dignitaries and members of the press at the game. A paper itinerary was set inside each plate, providing details about the All-Star Game banquet, he said.
The Twins went on to win the American League Championship that year, with 102 wins. They played the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series, losing in Game 7.
To commemorate the series, Doepner said, Red Wing produced a double bowl/ashtray piece in brown. The left bowl says "1965 World Series," and the right bowl says "Minnesota Twins, American League Champions" with an embossed Minnie and Paul logo.
At about the same time, Doepner said, Red Wing Potteries also came out with a small ashtray in the shape of Minnesota that is embossed with the same size and shape Minnie and Paul characters. The ashtray comes in several colors.
In the interviews that will be broadcast on Wednesday, Doepner is expected to also talk about how he came to be friends with former Twins owner Calvin Griffith, his involvement when the Twins moved to the Metrodome in 1982, and his current role as curator.
The pottery convention runs Thursday through Saturday in Red Wing. Wegner said preregistered members will be able to pick up their packets at the brat feed Wednesday, plus there'll be a membership tent for anyone interested in joining. People will have an opportunity to sign up to win a free membership, including the convention.