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Businesses, Baseball Fans Relish All-Star Experience

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Baseball is referred to as America's favorite past time, but for four days it's been Minnesotans who've celebrated the game like no other.

"Pinnacle of our life," said Diane Voehl, a fan. "Yep, it's the top."

Families, some three generations deep, have flocked in from around the state.

"We've been season ticket holders for many years and my parents brought us to Twins games when we were very young at Metropolitan Stadium," said Donna Damm, a Twins fan.

For some, it's an excuse to visit Minnesota for the first time.

"I love the park so far, it's great," said Matthew Goldman, a fan visiting from California.

And for the players, it's nothing but all-star treatment. Red carpet lined Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis as big names like Derek Jeter, Glen Perkins and Kurt Suzuki made their way to Target Field.

At nearby Fulton Brewery, the party started early with the tap of a special beer.

"Just for the All-Star festivities we brewed a Designated Bitter, which is an English bitter," said Gummy Grande, the tavern manager. "We're only two blocks from Target Field, so it's a perfect opportunity to be part of the fun over there."

Tuesday will be a late night for Kieran's Irish Pub. It's one of 31 bars that received a special permit to serve customers until 4 a.m. The game here is to cash in on a crowd that's a first for the pub.

"St. Patrick's Day is obviously a busy day for us, but you don't have quite the outside festive atmosphere you have today, it's a unique experience to itself," said Josh Petzel, a managing partner.

The All-Star Game is an experience to cherish for all Minnesotans and for those who simply just love baseball.

"Everyone is kind of on the same team," said Charles Heuring, a fan. "Everyone has different jerseys, but we're all rooting for the same thing, and that's to watch good baseball."

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