CHICAGO (MEDIA GENERAL) — The Chicago Cubs, in 2006, began selling personalized commemorative bricks to surround the famous Wrigley Field on the north side of Chicago. The problem? The pavers they billed as “permanent fixtures” weren’t so permanent.
People in Pontiac, Illinois, a city of about 12,000 people 100 miles southwest of Chicago, reportedly have found several of the personalized pavers around town, likely stemming from the nearby landfill.
First reported by the Pontiac Daily Leader, rumors had circulated around town that residents have found or been given the personalized pavers by workers from Republic Services, which runs routes from Chicago to Pontiac to dump the city’s waste at nearby landfill.
The cubs began selling the pavers in 2006, inviting fans to purchase pavers that would hold short personal messages. Prices varied, but according to the Pontiac Daily Leader, usually cost approximately $160.
The Cubs began a massive renovation project at Wrigley Field in September. The organization reportedly was asked about the pavers but never gave a direct answer on how they would be handled.
MLB.com blogger Carrie Muskat posted a letter the Cubs reportedly sent in November to members of the Wrigley Field Paver Program. The letter stated: “We are taking great care to preserve and protect your paver as work continues in and around the ballpark. … As part of this process, your paver may need to be moved and will not be accessible during this offseason. We will provide you with an update closer to Opening Day.”
On March 31, Cubs Vice President of Ballpark Operations Carl Rice held a press conference to read a prepared statement regarding the pavers. He reportedly declined all questions. Said Rice: “While some Wrigley Field pavers have already been removed on the ongoing construction, there are also some that have remained in the same location and will be accessible during the 2015 season. … Our plan is to replace and relocate all personalized pavers following the 2015 season. We anticipate the new pavers will be in place by Opening Day 2016. The original pavers will not be available for distribution and we will communicate specific locations once the design lays are finalized with those personalized pavers.”