BY TIME STAFF
GARY | Rusty the RailCat, the official ambassador of Gary SouthShore RailCats baseball, stopped by five Northwest Indiana health care facilities this week, passing out holiday cheer and some great presents to area kids just in time for the holidays.
An annual RailCats tradition, Rusty and members of the team's front office staff stopped by St. Margaret Mercy Hospital in Hammond and St. Catherine Hospital in East Chicago on Monday. On Tuesday, Rusty visited patients at Methodist Hospital's Northlake and Southlake campuses in Gary and Merrillville, respectively, and at the St. Jude House in Crown Point. Dressed in his Santa suit, Rusty not only mugged for photos with hospital patients and staff, he also delivered presents for boys and girls at each facility.
"It's a treat to be able to make these visits every holiday season and it's something our entire staff looks forward to," RailCats President/General Manager Roger Wexelberg said. "Rusty has a special ability to put smiles on kids' and adults' faces, and that's particularly important to us this time of year."
The RailCats have made holiday hospital visits each year since 2003.
Founded in 2002, the Gary SouthShore RailCats are Northwest Indiana's minor league professional baseball franchise. The RailCats play in the independent Northern League where they won championships in 2005 and 2007, and have advanced to an unprecedented five straight Championship Series. The RailCats play 50 home games each summer at The Steel Yard in Gary.