Bleacher Bums is a play conceived from an idea by actor Joe Mantegna and written collaboratively by members of Chicago's Organic Theater Company. It was first produced in 1977. In 1979 it was taped and aired on PBS television, and in 2002 a made-for-TV adaptation was produced.
The play takes place in the bleachers of Chicago's Wrigley Field, where a bunch of Cubbie (Chicago Cubs) fans are watching a game between the Cubs and arch rival, the St. Louis Cardinals, on a summer afternoon. Most of them have been gathering here for some time and know each other; even if they might not necessarily like or tolerate each other. Beer is being drunk, hot dogs and frosties are being eaten, and friendly (not always) wagers start to take on increasing importance.
Bleacher Bums has been presented at Mike ’n Molly’s Beer Garden in downtown Champaign several summers and admission usually includes a beverage, popcorn and pretzels (used to include a hot dog but that eventually required permitting). Future presentations are likely.
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