- February 24, 2023
The Tampa Bay Rays baseball season might be over, but local business owners Dean and Janet Mixon were still able to snag one last memory.
The Mixons, owners of Bradenton-based Mixon Fruit Farms, were chosen in a drawing of Rays season ticket holders to hold a section of the American flag during a pre-game ceremony Oct. 7. The Rays played the Boston Red Sox in a playoff game that night, a contest the team won 5-4 on a walk-off home run.
While the game was a blast, so was flag duty, says Janet Mixon. The Mixons have been Rays season ticket holders for seven seasons, but have never been on the field for a playoff event. “It was an awesome experience,” says Mixon. “It was a neat thing to be part of.”
Fitting, too, because the Mixons are unabashedly patriotic entrepreneurs. Mixon Fruit Farms holds several patriotic events at the facility every year, including free ice cream on holidays for kids who recite the Pledge of Allegiance. Plus, Janet Mixon's father and brother both served in the military. “We try to do things that are patriotic,” Mixon tells Coffee Talk. “To have a chance to hold a flag was huge.”