Veggie Races to go organic

(Reading, Pennsylvania) Rodale Institute, a non-profit dedicated to pioneering organic farming through research and outreach, today announced their new partnership with the Reading Fightin Phils, Double-A Minor League Baseball affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, to take their award-winning “Veggie Race” organic.

Each night Rodale Institute’s new “Organic Veggie Race” will be front and center during the inning breaks as part of the Reading Fightin Phils’ in-between inning entertainment. A huge fan-favorite, the “Organic Veggie Race” consists of three employees in vegetable costumes racing around the field, often with an unexpected twist. Celebrities have gotten involved, like when wrestling legend Jerry Lawler once clothes-lined Carrot. The veggies themselves have even gotten romantic; Broccoli proposed to his girlfriend in front of the entire stadium after winning the veggie race a few years ago. The moment was captured on video and was played on CNN, ESPN and had over 28,000 views on YouTube.

Rodale Institute’s founder, J.I. Rodale, coined the term, “organic agriculture,” in 1940 and founded the Institute in 1947 with the mission of improving the health and well-being of people and the planet. The Institute has assisted many farmers in their transition from using synthetic chemicals to organic practices. The Institute’s team has now begun to expand their focus beyond agriculture.

“We laid out a path to success for farmers who want to give up synthetic chemicals a long time ago. It has worked tremendously, and we’ll always be a resource for farmers” said Coach Mark Smallwood, Executive Director at Rodale Institute.

“Now we will also create new models for other institutions looking to go organic. It’s usually their food at first, but then we look at the cleaning materials or the landscaping – anywhere toxic chemicals might be used on their campuses, we help transition those practices using organic principles,” said Coach.

First Energy Stadium, home of the Reading Fightin Phils, is one of the Top 100 Stadium Experiences in sports, and is the top-ranked Minor League Baseball destination in all of Pennsylvania.

“I’ve always dreamed of being organic,” said Broccoli. “As an organic veggie, I can run faster and I’m safer for the kids to be around. My wife cried when I told her the news because she was so happy.”

The season begins with the first game on April 3rd at 7:05 PM in the First Energy Stadium at 1900 Centre Avenue/RT 61 South, Reading, PA 19605. The Fightin Phils will play against Portland.

Season tickets, mini-plans, and group tickets for the 2014 season at FirstEnergy Stadium are available by visiting, calling the Fightin Phils Ticket Office at 610-370-BALL, or by visiting the Fightin Phils Ticket Office in person at FirstEnergy Stadium. Follow the Fightin Phils on Twitter at @ReadingFightins and like them on Facebook via


Rodale Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to pioneering organic farming through research and outreach. For more than sixty years we’ve been researching the best practices of organic agriculture and sharing our findings with farmers and scientists throughout the world, advocating for policies that support farmers, and educating consumers about how going organic is the healthiest options for people and the planet.


CONTACT: Aaron Kinsman
Media Relations Specialist
Rodale Institute

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