Roger Owens is the
famed peanut vendor who tosses bags of peanuts under-the-leg, behind-the-back,
and two at a time, all with unbelievable accuracy, and to those seated
even more than 30 rows away. Roger has charmed and amazed generations
of fans with his "show within a show" at Dodger Stadium for
nearly 45 years. But he's worked the crowds for almost 50 years if you
include the Coliseum years from '58 to '61.
He didn't start trick-tossing peanut bags until 1962 when the Dodgers
moved into Dodger Stadium, even though he started at age 15 by selling
soda at the Coliseum, and moved up the vending chain to sell peanuts
in 1959, His consistent hard work and showmanship throughout the 1960's
not only helped increase his growing fan base who were thrilled with
his amazing tosses, but also with his growing media attention in the
1970's. Althought he was the focus of a number of television appearances
including news stories and game shows, Roger's career as an icon of
Dodger Stadium, who brings added fun and excitement to the game was
launched when he was seen nationwide on "The Tonight Show"
in September, 1976, on stage with Johnny Carson, as Carson's first guest
for the evening.
Roger's theatrics and nutty joke telling haven't been limited to Dodger
Stadium over the years. In fact, he's taken his peanut pitching to countless
Rams, USC, and UCLA football games at the Coliseum, Dallas Cowboys football
games once a year for 12 years straight, boxing matches, hockey games,
minor league baseball games, and he even has quite a following in Japan
after tossing out peanut bags at the American collegiate football all-star
games for a number of years at Yokohama Stadium.
There is so much fascinating information, from his personal life of
traumas, obstacles, happiness, and depression, to his public life of
pioneering and remarkable talent, sense of humor and a natural ability
to entertain, that to try to cover all of it here would be impossible
and inadequate. For a complete biography, please refer to the book,
"The Perfect Pitch, the Biography of Roger Owens, the Famous Peanut
Man at Dodger Stadium" by Daniel S. Green.