SAN FRANCISCO, CA – San Francisco Mayor London Breed will officially proclaim this Sunday, February 4, 2024 as “Willie Mays Day,” in honor of baseball legend #24 Willie Mays. A once-in-a-century date, 2.4.24 has never and will never again be experienced during Mays’ lifetime.
On 2.4.24, iconic San Francisco landmarks will be decorated in celebration of the “Say Hey Kid.” City Hall, the Ferry Building and Salesforce Tower will be dawned in orange and black lights, and Willie Mays Plaza – featuring the Willie Mays statue – and Oracle Park will also be illuminated in celebration of Mays. A special banner will hang from the 24 palm trees outside Oracle Park and the scoreboard will commemorate 2.4.24 throughout the day. Mayor Breed will be joined by Mays’ Godson Barry Bonds and Giants President and CEO Larry Baer in making the proclamation at San Francisco City Hall on the first day of Black History Month. The official proclamation will be shared publicly on 2.4.24.
As one of the best players in MLB history, Mays fostered unity, pride, identity and leadership. “Willie Mays Day” will celebrate the Hall of Famer’s impact as well as the grace, dignity and joy that he exudes. 2.4.24 will honor the example Mays sets as a hero and mentor, inspiring youth at the Hunters Point Boys and Girls Club that bears his name, through the Willie Mays Scholars program, the Say Hey Foundation and beyond.
Willie Mays said, “I am honored by Mayor Breed’s proclamation, and would like to thank the City of San Francisco and the Giants for this day. The game of baseball has been great to me, and not only was I given the opportunity to play, but I was also given the opportunity to help kids all around the world. To me, this day means I am loved. This is as much my day as it is for everyone who loves the Game.”
Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. said, “Our National Pastime always welcomes the opportunity to celebrate the game’s greatest living player, Willie Mays. Major League Baseball applauds the San Francisco Giants and the City of San Francisco for honoring the best number 24 of all in grand fashion. To this day, Willie remains an inspiration to sports fans and baseball players everywhere. We look forward to highlighting Willie’s legacy at the MLB at Rickwood Field Game in his hometown of Birmingham this June 20th.”
“To sports fans around the globe, Willie’s accomplishments and persona as the “Say Hey Kid” resonate every day,” said Larry Baer, President and CEO of the San Francisco Giants. “2.4.24 is one more opportunity to call attention to a man who, in our minds, is the greatest player ever. We are blessed to play our games at 24 Willie Mays Plaza with his image at our front door.”
In a symbolic celebration of the Negro Leagues, and its greatest living player – Willie Mays – the San Francisco Giants will face off against the St. Louis Cardinals on June 20, 2024 at Rickwood Field. Rickwood Field, the oldest professional ballpark in the U.S., is the former home of the Birmingham Black Barons – the Negro League team Mays played for until the Giants signed him upon his graduation from high school in 1950.
Named in honor of the Hall-of-Famer, the Giants Community Fund launched the Willie Mays Scholars program in 2021 to make college aspirations come true for Black youth in San Francisco. Five scholars are inducted annually and receive a scholarship of up to $20,000. To celebrate “Willie Mays Day,” the Willie Mays Scholars application is officially open for the 2024 season. Fans may join Willie Mays and the Giants in giving the gift of education via: giantscommunityfund.org/wms.
Fans everywhere are encouraged to join the Giants in celebrating Willie Mays on 2.4.24. For more information, visit sfgiants.com/2424, and follow along with @SFGiants on Instagram, X , TikTok, YouTube and Facebook.