For the second straight year, former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz met fans at the 18th annual Saratoga Wine and Food Festival.
During the Friday night portion of the festival at Saratoga Performing Arts Center, “Big Papi” hosted a meet and greet for 100 people, who all had their pictures taken individually with the baseball hero and received an autographed bottle of his wine, Arias.
Following the private meet and greet, Ortiz hosted a VIP experience in the VIP Nightclub, overlooking the Spa State Park reflecting pool.
Ortiz said he wanted to come back to the festival in the Spa City since he enjoys meeting with his fans, while also being able to raise money for charity, with a portion of the proceeds going towards the David Ortiz Children’s Fund, a charity which funds pediatric services for children in New England and the Dominican Republic.
“It’s good. People are super nice here, and you know what we’re trying to do, besides bringing a good product out, we also work with the charity, so we can raise money to help children, so it has been great,” said Ortiz, while signing some promotional photos.
The former three-time World Series champion, who retired after the 2016 season, said he named his wine line after his late mother, Angela Rosa Arias, who was killed in a car crash in 2002. The wine line, which he officially launched after his 20-year baseball career, pays tribute to his mother on the bottle with two hands pointing up - Ortiz would point his two fingers up to the sky after hitting home runs during his playing career, in memory of his mother.
“My mom was my everything,” said Ortiz. “Pretty much it’s all based on her and everything that I learned from her and all the love and all the appreciation.”
Ortiz said he wanted to create a wine line, along with his cigar line, Big Papi Cigars by David Ortiz, since those are things that he normally uses and are things that he knows.
“It’s doing good, but you know it’s still developing,” said Ortiz. “People are tasting the product because both of them are good products, so hopefully we get where we want to be,” said Ortiz.
Ortiz said he likes the atmosphere in Saratoga Springs and how people here appreciate his work.
“People are nice here, man,” said Ortiz. “The people [here] are easy-going, very involved, charity means a lot to all of them, so that’s something that is to me very important.”
Earlier in the day Friday, Ortiz hosted a meet and greet appearance at the Exit 9 Wine & Liquor Warehouse in Clifton Park.
Source: TroyRecord | Nicholas Buonanno | September 8, 2018