A wedding at Marcusen ParkPublished 6:03pm Thursday, June 20, 2013
When Austin Greyhounds pitcher Joe Huffman was looking for the right place to get married, he knew the location he wanted — Marcusen Park.
Huffman’s fiance, Ellie Ramseth, wasn’t immediately sold on the idea.
This past winter the couple made the decision to go for it, so something very rare will happen for a Saturday in June this weekend. There will be no baseball in Marcusen Park.
Instead Huffman and Ramseth will exchange their wedding vows on the mound that Huffman pitches from in front of their close family and friends, which includes plenty of Hounds and Blue Sox players.
“Originally I thought it would be cool to have it here,” Ramseth said. “I wanted an aisle to walk down and we couldn’t really do that. But over the winter I figured there’s a way we can make this work.”
Within five minutes of Ramseth agreeing to get married at Marcusen, Huffman was on the phone with Joe Serratore making sure he could go forward with it.
Marcusen has been a special place to Huffman ever since he was a kid growing up in Austin.
“This is the place where I grew up as a I kid watching Minny Stars and Legion games. I always wanted to play here,” Huffman said. “I called it the big stage and it almost felt like the Major Leagues to me.”
The Hounds were very helpful in accommodating for Huffman’s wedding plans as they moved their SpamTown Challenge Tournament back a week and they don’t have any games scheduled this weekend.
Huffman, who used to play with the Austin Blue Sox and joined the Hounds a few years ago, said that amateur baseball has given him a deeper appreciation for the game.
“Baseball has helped me through life situations,” Huffman said. “Being around the guys and having a good experience on the baseball field was helpful.”
Ramseth is a big sports fan and she grew up playing volleyball, so she can relate to Huffman’s passion for his sport.
She’s also been checking the weather forecast daily to make to make sure the wedding can be outside. In case of rain, the ceremony, which is scheduled for 3:30 p.m., will be moved to Our Saviors Lutheran Church.
Hopefully for Huffman and Ramseth, no Hounds’ fans will wander by expecting to see a game on a Saturday afternoon
“Hopefully no random hecklers come,” Ramseth joked.
Huffman isn’t aware of anyone else ever getting married at Marcusen, but his Hounds’ teammate Gabe Kasak held his graduation party there this year.
Walking down the aisle can bring out nerves in just about anyone and Huffman is prepared for what may come.
“I think it’ll be very exciting. I’ll have the adrenaline going just like when I go through that gate for a game,” he said. “I start getting butterflies whenever I know I’m going to pitch and it’ll probably be very similar than that and probably a little enhanced.”
Huffman didn’t play baseball for a couple of years after his high school career ended and now he can’t imagine a summer night without being at the ball park. The 31-year old pitcher said he’s not planning on quitting any time soon.
“If Elie’s all right with it, I’m going to keep playing until I can’t get people out anymore,” he said. “Then I’ll go play slow pitch softball or something.”
The Hounds will host the SpamTown Challenge June 27, June 28, June 29 and June 30.