Baseball Hall of Fame to Launch National Education Outreach Program to Promote Healthy Lifestyle Choices, Free of Performance-Enhancing Substances

‘Be A Superior Example’ Encourages Individuals of All Ages to Sign Pledge to Live and Play Performance-Enhancing Substances-Free

February 08, 2012

COOPERSTOWN, NY – The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum today announced the launch of a national education and outreach program to promote healthy and active lifestyles for all individuals, while educating students about the dangers of performance-enhancing substances.

“Be A Superior Example,” known by its acronym as “BASE,” introduces the concepts of healthy lifestyle choices through a new education unit that will commence this summer through the Museum’s outreach programs, primarily geared toward all middle and high school students, including athletes. Components of BASE will deliver messages of the negative effects performance-enhancing substances can have on an individual’s health, as well as the consequences resulting in performance-enhancement use, particularly among youth.

The cornerstone of the BASE program will feature the first major national registry to record individual commitments to live a life free of performance-enhancing substances. The registry will live online at baseballhall.org and will feature the incorporation of an interactive kiosk in Cooperstown, which will feature profiles and photos of those who have made the commitment to the lessons of healthy living.

Registration for the “PES-free” pledge will begin this summer, as part of a national outreach to schools and youth athletic programs. Online educational tools will be available for access by individuals, teams, parents, coaches and families, with more in-depth programs available through the Museum’s on-site and videoconference educational offerings.

“The BASE program promotes healthy choices, while educating students and adults about the dangers of performance-enhancing substances,” said Jeff Idelson, President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. “The introduction of this content to the Museum’s award-winning educational curriculum is a natural integration into how we educate youth everyday about American culture, with topics ranging from history and character education to math and science, through the lens of baseball. BASE provides a powerful refrain and common foundation for students of all ages that performance-enhancing substances are dangerous, and the only way to live a healthy life is to do so free of these harmful substances.”

The BASE program features a multi-tiered outreach schedule and timeline, with educational components and registration opportunities slated to begin during the 2012 baseball season.

In addition to the online registry and education lessons from Cooperstown, the BASE program will provide for national exposure opportunities to raise the public awareness on the prevalence of PES use in today’s society. Other objectives of the BASE program include: educating audiences about the short- and long-term effects of PES use; providing guidance for developing healthy lifestyles and injury prevention; empowering students, parents and athletic administrators with the ability to identify potential PES use; and providing strategies to help individuals of all ages make informed decisions about their own health and in influencing the health of others.

“The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum houses three entities under one roof: The Hall of Fame for the game’s greats, a Museum to document the rich history of our national pastime, and a Library and Education Center to provide research and educational opportunities for every generation,” Idelson said. “It is through the education programs that we are able to fulfill our mission of providing context to the issues that have faced our game, as a reflection of American history, throughout its history.

“Hall of Fame voting has been a part of this nation’s fabric since 1936, and has touted the virtues of character, sportsmanship and integrity, along with the contributions to the game, as integral qualifications for earning election,” added Idelson. “The various voting bodies for Hall of Fame election will continue to use that criterion in evaluating candidates. The BASE program provides educational content, as mission-based programming designed to influence the lives of young adults and promote the healthy elements of playing all sports the right way. It is not intended to cast a directive to voters about Hall of Fame-worthy candidates.”

A national fundraising campaign for the BASE program will continue this spring, with targeted fundraising goals designed to help the Museum fund several projects that will reach audiences nationwide with meaningful education. The Museum is committed to working with the Taylor Hooton Foundation and the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society (PBATS) as partners in delivering content and programmatic elements.

Among the targets presently identified by the Museum for delivery in the next 18 months, based on funding, include: a national survey to document the use of performance-enhancing substances and the need for increased national education; on-site educational programs in 20 communities nationally; and a national summit in Cooperstown, bringing together youth baseball representatives and education experts in the field of performance-enhancing substances to further address the need for widespread participation and promotion.

Future potential outreach targets, based on funding, include community based webinars, continuing education programs for medical professionals on PES use and effects, and expanded distribution of programmatic materials and elements to influence even greater numbers of individuals to lead a performance-enhancing substance-free lifestyle.

Complete information of the BASE program is available through a comprehensive white paper, featuring detailed data on the use of performance-enhancing substances and the fundraising objectives of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, online at www.baseballhall.org/BASE.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is open seven days a week year round, with the exception of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. The Museum observes regular hours of 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. from Labor Day until Memorial Day Weekend. From Memorial Day Weekend through the day before Labor Day, the Museum observes summer hours of 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. Ticket prices are $19.50 for adults (13 and over), $12 for seniors (65 and over) and for those holding current memberships in the VFW, Disabled American Veterans, American Legion and AMVets organizations, and $7 for juniors (ages 7-12). Members are always admitted free of charge and there is no charge for children 6 years of age or younger. For more information, visit our Web site at baseballhall.org or call 888-HALL-OF-FAME (888-425-5633) or 607-547-7200.