LEWISTON, Idaho – Steven Larsen was expecting just another night at the ballpark Wednesday watching the Avista NAIA World Series with his mother, Brandy.
Instead, he found himself holding balloons among other things, posing for pictures, and answering questions with television cameras zooming in.
The 14-year-old eighth grader at Clarkston Middle School became the one millionth fan to walk through the gates at Harris Field during action through the years of the Avista NAIA World Series at Lewis-Clark State College’s Ed Cheff Stadium. This includes the overall attendance from Series games at LCSC during 1984-91 and again during 2000-present.
Entering Wednesday’s action at the Series, college officials said there were about 900 fans short of eclipsing the one million mark. Larsen and his mom had their tickets scanned right before the first pitch of the night game featuring Tennessee Wesleyan and the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.
After passing through the ticket gate, the Larsens were greeted by tournament director and LCSC athletic director Brooke Henze, who presented Steven with a tub that contained many of the prizes for being the 1,000,000th fan.
Henze said the prize package include two reserved seats, two VIP passes and a parking pass to the 2020 Avista NAIA World Series, a framed poster of this year’s tournament, and plenty of LCSC and Avista NAIA World Series apparel and prizes.
Steven said he has been attending games at the Series over the years, but was not aware the Series was about to have its 1,000,000 fan attend a Series game in Lewiston.
Brandy said she started to bring Steven to the game as something for them to do together. Brandy said she led a Girl Scout troop that includes her daughters and wanted to do something fun with her son so about five years ago they started attending games at the Series and also volunteering. The two volunteered again at the Series this year.
“He is an amazing son,” Brandy said. “He helps around the house and does everything I can’t. It feels amazing for him. He deserves it. He has worked hard all year in school.”
Steven said he’s a “semi” baseball fan, but basketball is probably his favorite sport. He said he does enjoy coming to the games because they are fun.
Steven is a life-long resident of Clarkston and said his favorite subject in school is math.