A look back at the 'Disco Demolition' - FOX 32 News Chicago

A look back at the 'Disco Demolition'

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

On July 12, 1979, a promotion soon became pandemonium. Some call it a mistake, but others call it “Disco Demolition.”

Disco was dying, and 35 years ago, the final nail was hammered into its coffin. Infamous Chicago Shock jock Steve Dahl teamed up with Chicago White Sox owner Bill Veeck to create a promotional event to jump start a slacking Sox season.

The concept was simple: Get into the game for $.98 if you bring a disco record, and between the double header they would blow them up.

Peter Alter, historian at the Chicago History Museum, remembers the night vividly.

White sox officials had hoped 20,000 people would show up for the promotion. Instead, 50,000 packed the stadium.

Clad in army fatigues and a helmet, Steve Dahl led the procession of pandemonium - and that’s when things began to go wrong.

Broken records rained from the sky as thousands of fans swarmed the field, creating a suffocating blanket of chaos that White Sox officials were powerless to penetrate.

The damage to the field and park were catastrophic, resulting in the forfeit of the second game of the double header – though the stain on the White Sox reputation has started to fade.

They say “time heals all wounds,” so maybe 35 years is long enough to heal the damage of the demolition.

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