Friday, December 7, 2018

Isabella Tropeano Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Isabella Tropeano is a world traveler, a Red Sox fan, and a current member of the New
Photo by Rob Hare
Patriots Cheerleaders! I'm so excited that she was willing to take some time out of her schedule to talk with us about those topics, and a few more. I know you'll love reading what she had to say.

So, let’s see what happens when Isabella Tropeano visits Section 36!

You have a degree in applied psychology and human development. What do you like about that field? 
I LOVE people. Honest and truly I cannot imagine my world without lots of social interactions. I love getting to know people, exploring our similarities, differences, values, goals and even the way we think! While I don’t currently hold a job in this exact field, I like to think that my degree helps me every day in the field of personal training and of course as an NFL cheerleader!

What made you decide to try out to be a New England Patriots Cheerleader? 
Photo by Rob Hare
I decided to try out to become a New England Patriots Cheerleader first and foremost because I was ready to take my dancing to the next level. I was on BC’s dance team for three years and was ready to push myself to become a professional. Making the team has been the most amazing experience of my life. When deciding to try out I could have never even imagined all the opportunities and experiences NFL cheerleading would soon reward me.

How did you celebrate making the squad for a second time? 
The second time I made the team I was surrounded by my teammates at Gillette Stadium! Making the team a second time was so different from the first, I think because I got to be excited about all the things I knew I would get to experience again, like our swimsuit calendar trip, game days and promotional appearances.

How have things been different for you during your second year on the team? 
Things have been so different this year but definitely all in the best
way possible! I feel more confident and not as nervous when performing in front of all of our fans, and lots of new friendships with my teammates have blossomed which I am so thankful for. It’s a known NEPC thing that you wait for the day you are no longer a rookie because you finally feel like you have it all together!

You’ve been able to travel all over the world. What has been your favorite place to visit? Why? 
While my favorite place has to be Italy, since that is where my Dad is from and where most of my family lives, another amazing trip I took was to Mexico City for the Patriots vs. Raiders game. I had no idea what Mexico City would be like and the people were so warm and welcoming. I got to climb to the top of the Pyramid of the Sun and sign autographs for hundreds of fans. Being with my best friends, in a brand-new place doing what we love certainly made memories that will last a life time.  

What is your personal fitness routine? 
I switch up my fitness routine all the time and since I’m a personal trainer myself I’m constantly trying new things. While I love getting in the gym and doing cardio and weights I also love Corepower yoga’s sculpt class. Sculpt is a yoga class which incorporates weights. It’s high intensity and sure to leave you sore the next day. Speaking of fitness if anyone is looking for a new routine, I’m running a January fitness program with my teammate Talia which is sure to be a success!

Your boyfriend is a pitcher in the Minnesota Twins organization. Are you still able to cheer for the Red Sox? 
Of course!! Since we both live in Boston during his off season we certainly still root for the Sox. I grew up a Red Sox fan and they will always be one of my favorite teams. There’s nothing like a warm summer night watching baseball with a famous Fenway Frank!

Is there a feature or activity at Fenway Park that you’d especially like to experience? 
I’ve always wanted to go to one of the extreme winter sports events at Fenway Park. I think it would be so cool to see the park transformed into a snowy wonderland!

What were you doing when the Red Sox won the 2018 World Series? 
Brian and I were on our couch glued to the TV! We had good vibes it was going to be the Red Sox throughout the entire series and were waiting for that last pitch!


I bet a lot of us would answer that last question the same way!

As always, I want to thank Isabella for visiting with us. I enjoyed everything she had to say! I also want to thank her for the pictures she sent along to include with the interview. They're incredible shots.

As a way to follow along with Isabella, I suggest you visit her New England Patriots Cheerleaders bio page. It's full of great information and pictures. It's a wonderful way to follow her journey through the season, and hopefully the Super Bowl!

You should also absolutely contact her to take part in the January fitness program she's running! It looks like the perfect way to make sure that you keep that New Year's resolution this year.

Thanks again for the visit Isabella, and Go Pats!

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Was Adrian Beltre Any Good?

With the announcement of his retirement fresh in my mind, I thought it would be fun to see how potential Hall of Famer Adrian Beltre performed in games where I was in the park. Or, at least games where I kept score. After all, the guy played forever, and even spent some time in Boston. So I should have a pretty healthy sample.

Let's see what we have.

Adrian Beltre
660 AB AVG66009431311570000.1430.1820.1430.325

Yeah. I was surprised too. Six games? I know he spent lots of time in the NL, but he also spend a ton of time in the AL. I would have expected at least a dozen. But, six is what we've got. So, how did he do in that six-game sample?

Not exactly Hall of Fame numbers. A .143 batting average? Even worse, a .143 slugging percentage? Dear god, a .324 OPS? Nasty, nasty, nasty...and not nasty like Chris Sale’s slider.

Which is disappointing. Especially since most of those games, he was wearing a Boston uniform. I wanted him to be hitting well when I saw him. And, he just didn't.

So, once again I didn't see the true Adrian Beltre. I'm starting to think I'm bad luck or something. Maybe I should start going to more Yankees games to test that theory.

How did Adrian Beltre do while you were in the park?

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Championships Cost Money

Especially if your favorite team keeps winning them.

If you've read this blog for more than a post or two, you know I'm a collector. Delicately balancing that line between collector and hoarder. Naturally, one of the best little segments of collecting is World Championship merchandise and memorabilia.

When you're first exposed to that segment of collections, it's a bit of surprise. Suddenly the Red Sox win the World Series, and the flood of choices comes pouring out. And some of them are under a time constraint. If you want a newspaper, you need to get it that next day. Probably even the next morning. If you want a magazine, you might get a week to think about it. Other choices will sell out quickly, so you better know what you want.

When the Sox won in 2004, I talked to a Yankees fan. I asked him what he bought to celebrate the 1996 Yankees championship. He responded with a World Series hat, and a picture of the pig pile celebration. I thought those were pretty good choices. Of course, I added a few of my own selections on top of that. I think I ended up with a nice selection.

Since then (and even a bit before then) I've gotten plenty of practice when it comes to championship purchases. There are DVDs. And baseball card sets. And autographs. And on and on.

So, when we came to the 2018 World Championship, I was almost a pro at it. Grab the newspaper first thing in the morning. Be sure to get an extra early edition with the funny incomplete headline. Get the Sports Illustrated for the week. Get the commemorative Sports Illustrated. Wait for the DVD and order it. Grab a parade shirt. Grab the can of Coke. Grab a ToppsNOW card.


Which can be expensive as a Boston fan and you have to do this for at least one of your favorite teams every couple of years. I have to forgo the hat purchases because I wasn't wearing out the old one fast enough. I only buy the parade/locker room shirts I really like. Otherwise, I'll go broke.

Oh, the troubles with being a Boston fan.

What about you? What is on your "must buy" championship item list? What have you stopped buying?

Assuming you still have money left.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Still Shopping?

Have you spent all your money yet? I hope not, because the Section 36 is having another sale!!!

I know, it's not that long since the last one. But, so many people told me they missed the last sale, and wished they hadn't, that I wanted to let everyone know about the current one.

Today through Wednesday, the Section 36 will be on sale! Don't miss this opportunity to show your support for the blog! You definitely want to be one of the cool kids, right?

So, head over right now and select something that you like. But, don't delay. Remember, the sale only runs through Wednesday! That's right only a few days before prices go back to their regular levels.

And, as always, when you do get an item, send me a picture wearing it for me to share with the world! The blogFacebook, and even Instagram!

Like Bernadette did to show off how amazing this tank top looks on her.

This tank is 27% off!

Or Phil did.

This tank is also 27% off!

Or Holly did with her cozy new hoodie.

This hoodie is 21% off!

Or Nicolette did with her great t-shirt!

This t-shirt is 30% off!

But, first you need to buy something you like. There's a lot to choose from.

What will you get?

Friday, November 30, 2018

Jenna Martorana Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Jenna Martorana is a twirler, a baseball employee, and the current Miss Red Rose City. I’m so
excited she was interested in visiting with us to discuss those topics, and a few more. I knowyou’ll love reading everything she had to say!

So, let’s see what happens when Jenna Martorana visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Red Rose City crown? 
I was in complete shock that I won! I was clapping for myself as I walked to be crowned I was so surprised. After taking tons of pictures and calling my family I went out to eat with my crown still on and treated myself to a big glass of coke! Anyone
who knows me knows I love my coke but am trying to cut back. I kept my crown on until I got home and took sleeping crown pictures with my dog Sophie and her crown! I also immediately made a list of appearances I wanted to participate in to advocate for my platform!

What has surprised you the most about your time with the Miss Red Rose City crown?
I think what has surprised me the most is how much of a difference I can actually make by just telling my story. It took me three years to work up the courage to compete because I didn’t think anyone would want someone like me as a titleholder but I quickly learned that wasn’t true. I have gained so much support for my platform by being transparent and real about my mental health. I have been able to inspire others to be open up about their mental health and trust me enough to share their stories with me. I often struggle with thinking I don’t have a purpose or not being good enough like a lot of people with mental illnesses so I never thought I could make so much of a difference to others by being me.  

What was your favorite thing you’ve done during your time as Miss Red Rose City?
It is hard to narrow down what my favorites were but one of them
was the Out of the Darkness Walk in Philadelphia that the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention held. It allowed me to spend the day with thousands of people who are suicide attempt survivors like myself, lost a loved one to suicide or want to raise awareness for suicide prevention. I’m so grateful to have been able to participate with NAMI Bucks County and Montgomery County as well as with Brooke Glen Behavioral Hospital. Another amazing experience was being invited by Miss Pennsylvania 2017 to Hoffman Homes for Youth for Miss America Serves Day. Hoffman Homes for Youth is a psychiatric residential treatment center for children 6-17. The Miss PA Class of 2018 collected dresses for the girls ahead of time and did their hair and makeup that day so they could put on their own pageant! Each child had a sash with their power word on it and told the audience what their word meant to them. It was so special to share my platform with these kids because they are kids just like me battling mental illnesses. When I spoke of my platform, I saw the understanding on their faces and since this was the first time I spoke aloud about my story I realized why it was important I keep doing it. 

How do you plan out your “color guard” talent performance?
My current talent routine is actually part of my indoor color guard routine I did with my team my senior year of high school. I had shortened and changed the routine before to make it a solo to perform at baton competitions but then I cut it down even more to fit the 90 second time limit. It is a rifle routine to the Three Tenors “Hallelujah” that is dedicated to those who have served and those who are serving our country. I didn’t have to think twice about choosing color guard over baton twirling when I decided to start competing in January but I have often been questioned why I did it since baton twirling is considered a “pageant talent”. That’s part of the reason why. I wanted to be able to stand out and share something different with the audience. I love to perform and I feel I can put so much more of myself into my color guard routines allowing the audience an even better experience. 

How did you select your platform, #CureStigma?
My original platform that I competed on and won with was called “Breaking Down the Stigma Surrounding Mental Illness by
Opening Up”. I told my story of depression, anxiety and OCD and encouraged other to share theirs because by putting a face to the illness makes it more than a diagnosis. I am very open about my battle with mental illnesses and post often on my social media about myself, tips for improving ones mental health and information to educate my followers about mental health and illnesses. Through my year I had the opportunity to work with local chapters of the National Alliance on Mental Illness which inspired me to change my platform slightly. A campaign they created is called #CureStigma and portrays stigma as a social virus that can be cured through compassion, empathy and understanding. My beliefs on mental illness align with NAMI’s and I think the #CureStigma campaign makes stigma understandable for people of all ages. I will continue to advocate for my platform even after I’m done competing because I will be starting my masters degree in school counseling at Kutztown University in January. I’m lucky that my university believes in the importance of mental health education and has its own NAMI club on campus that I am able to partner with in addition to other local county chapters. I am in the process of being trained to be on NAMI Bucks County’s speaking team who educates students on mental health and stigma to make their schools and organizations stigma free!

What is your personal fitness routine?
As someone who doesn’t enjoy going to the gym, I have to try and do things to make it fun! My best friend writes workouts for me to help keep me motivated including a pre Miss Pennsylvania workout plan! I have had a lot of injuries from color guard and baton twirling so I’m working to build those muscles back up while staying in shape. My favorite thing is riding the stationary bike while watching Netflix on my phone. 45 minutes will fly by that way! I will also mix in circuit training and classes like Zumba and yoga. 

The past few seasons, you’ve been a diamond girl for the Reading Fightin Phils. What do you do in that position?
As a diamond girl I have a few different jobs I’ll do depending on where I’m scheduled. First Energy Stadium has three different buffet areas- the ‘67 Club, Bunbinos Tailagte and the Character Pool Party (yes we have a poo in the outfieldl!). If I’m scheduled at one of the buffets then I will check tickets and give the appropriate wristband out of five options based on the type of buffet and seating they have. The Fightin’ Phils are big on giveaways such as shirts and bobble heads so some days I could be handing them out at the main gate. Lastly we have 6 different mascots! The Crazy Hot Dog Vendor is the face of the Fightins and is their logo. There is also Screwball the baseball, Blooper the dog, Change Up the turtle, Bucky the beaver and Quack the duck. Some nights I escort one of them around the stadium making sure they get to greet lots of fans and give autographs. 

What is your favorite part of that job?
My favorite part of the job is being able to interact with the fans
and meet others in my community. I might not know much about baseball (it took until my second season to learn what a double play was) but I really enjoy being able to help the fans have a memorable experience. 

What made you decide to work for a minor league baseball team?
Two of my older cousins had both worked for the Fightins and so that is basically how I ended up with the job. I really enjoy being apart of the Fightins family though because they’re such a major part of the community. The Fightin Phils created Baseballtown Charities to keep baseball alive for children in Reading. As someone with a degree in Applied Disability Studies, my favorite is that Baseballtown Charities started the Dream League for Children with Disabilities and with support from other local businesses recently completed a field for the Dream League kids which includes a playground useable for children of all abilities. I’m proud to be apart of an organization that gives back so much to its community including being one of my sponsors. 


It sounds like an incredible job!

As always, I want to give huge thanks to Jenna for doing this interview. And I want to thank her for providing the amazing pictures to accompany the interview. They're really perfect!

As Jenna continues her time as Miss Red Rose City, I encourage you to follow her on her official Miss Red Rose City Facebook. It’ll be worth your time! 

Thanks again Jenna!

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