While the ritual of playing catch with your kids is pretty universal in America, Boston takes baseball to a whole other level. The Red Sox are far more than just a team to local devotees: seeing a game with your family is something akin to a religious experience, the best sort of bonding for fans of all ages.
Naturally, parents who grew up with the Sox want to teach their little ones everything about this beloved institution from day one. And we really mean day one, or at least year one: you can definitely take your baby to the park, and many parents do. When this fan asked on Reddit whether it was ok to take his 9-month-old son to Fenway, many pooh-poohed it, but others shared their own emotional stories about how the Sox were deeply important to their family, like:
“Though I haven’t any children I say screw what these dudes said and bring the kid. Not for him, but for you. He may not remember it, but you always will. He’s your son, that’s a beautiful thing.
“My dad passed his love of the Sox on to me and I’m not even sure I remember when I started loving the Sox, think I just always did. And for that I credit my dad.
“I love you Dad.”
In recent years, the Sox have stepped up their efforts to make the park kid-friendlier, and that includes some pretty awesome freebies: kids who join Red Sox Kid Nation may be able to get tickets for free! A free “Rookie” membership also comes with 10% off Red Sox Baseball Camp, 10% off official Red Sox Store for 2016 season, Kid Nation email newsletters, Kid Nation Passport, and access to exclusive Kid Nation events, and for $39.95, you can add an exclusive player backpack, a teeshirt, and a Kid Nation LED watch. If you’ve got a kid who loves baseball, may I suggest a membership as a birthday gift?
With that said: we’ve got tons of other great gifts for Boston kids, and here are just a few Sox-themed items they’ll love!
RED SOX GEAR FOR BABIES
We believe in getting Boston babies started early on the Sox! First things first: get your baby geared up in style with adorable Sox onezies from Chowdaheadz! You can choose from the classic navy Love Boston Onezie or the darling Rookie Onezie, with a cute faux-button motif on the front.
Next, it’s time for a little Sox-related education: get them up to speed at bedtime with the Boston Red Sox 101 My First Team Board Book and the Red Sox ABC Board Book, which provide an age-appropriate intro to key concepts like the Green Monster and the importance of the 2004 World Series. You can also give them a wider view of why Boston is wicked awesome with the Boston 101 Board Book.
Finally, the Chewbeads Boston Red Sox Teether sneaks in some team spirit along with the sweet relief that chewing can provide for sore gums!
RED SOX GEAR FOR BIG KIDS
By now, your older child is totally hooked on baseball, and is eager both to watch baseball and to play baseball. This jumbo foam bat and ball set from Franklin Toys features an officially licensed Sox logo and is sized for the little guys and gals to use. They can also practice their swing with the Franklin Sports MLB Super-Star Batter Tee, or enjoy some of those storied games of catch with you, with the Air Tech Foam Glove and Ball Set.
If they love the team but aren’t as into taking the field, OYO Sports has an endless array of great toys for Sox fans: the OYO Sports Red Sox Infield Set lets kids build an authentic-looking field with real team logos, and set up their own fantasy games. The Red Sox Game Time Set provides an even more deluxe experience, with 136 total OYO building blocks (compatible with other popular brick toys), and kids can fill up the field with the Red Sox Ballpark Training Cart, the Retirement Edition David Ortiz minifigure, and more.
Finally: don’t go to the game without a Red Sox hat! (It’s important for sun protection as well as team spirit!) We’ve got Boston Red Sox hats for kids in sizes from infant up to kid, in Red, Navy, and Pink.