If this week’s All-Star FanFest boasts the world’s biggest baseball, that’s news to Jeff Hanson.
He has a dream to revive his small town in Kansas, and it involves a giant baseball of his own — built from the tank of Muscotah’s old water tower and turned into a museum.
Hanson didn’t know about the record-holder, MLB’s 121/2-foot baseball, and grew thoughtful when it was described to him.
“Well,” he said. “Ours is 20 feet.”
Major League Baseball officials, for their part, didn’t know about Hanson either, and say they never really considered the idea of someone building a bigger baseball.
...It was Hanson’s idea to turn the enormous metal orb that now sits in his front yard into a baseball and the only museum created in honor of Joe Tinker, a native son of Muscotah and a Chicago Cubs Hall of Famer. The connection to Tinker is one of Muscotah’s very few claims to fame, and Hanson hopes to capitalize on it and bring people and dollars into a town that has seen little of either in recent years.
Jeff Hanson understands the American mania of baseball, although he admits he is not a baseball fan and has little interest in the coming week’s All-Star festivities in Kansas City.