CubsCon Schedule Released, No Ricketts Family or Biz Ops Panels This Time

The Cubs released the programming lineup for the 2024 Cub Convention January 12-14 at the Sheraton Grand Chicago, and there were some notable absences this time around. Neither the Ricketts family nor Crane Kenney’s business operations team will have panels at the annual event, which some may find troubling in light of the team’s complete lack of spending so far in the offseason. While it’s probably not directly indicative of their plans for free agency, there may be a little more than fan boredom at play here.

That was the stated reason for the removal a few years ago of the ownership panel that typically led off Saturday’s slate. It’s true that attendance was not the best due to the timing and attendees’ collective hangover, but it felt very much like dodging tough questions when the Cubs weren’t spending much ahead of the 2019 and ’20 seasons.

The biz ops panel has often served as either a commercial or de facto political ad, so it’s likewise a case of addition by subtraction from a content perspective. That said, this would have been a perfect opportunity to discuss the state of RSNs and whether/how Marquee is poised to capitalize on a shifting market.

Even if neither panel was particularly riveting and even if this doesn’t portend a continued lack of offseason activity, I see their removal as a big miss by the organization. This has the same feel of ownership and the business side ducking difficult conversations and putting the baseball ops folks out to deal with everything, not that such a strategy is particularly novel.

But let’s say Jed Hoyer ends up pulling off some big moves here in the next few weeks and fans are really excited about what’s happening with the roster. Wouldn’t Ricketts want to be out there for that? Sure, unless the real issue doesn’t lie with current players. As noted last week, Sammy Sosa is on the ballot for inclusion in the 2024 Cubs Hall of Fame class that will be announced Friday night.

I would think Ricketts would want to be part of that as well, though I suppose it’s possible his longstanding grudge against Sosa is not something he’s ready to let go of yet.

It’s also notable that they’ve done away with the voucher system for sought-after autographs, so those will all be first-come, first-served. I don’t know if that’s a matter of putting the kibosh on the after-market sale of said vouchers or what, but it’s an interesting move. This is also the second year in a row that they won’t have a Down on the Farm panel concluding things on Sunday morning.

See the press release below for more info.

CHICAGO – One month to go, Cubs fans! The 37th Annual Cubs Convention returns January 12-14, 2024, to the Sheraton Grand Chicago. Join fellow Cubs fans for an action-packed weekend filled with fan-favorite activities including autograph sessions with Cubs legends, players and coaches, engaging panel discussions, interactive exhibits including the popular archive display rooms, live Cubs Authentics auctions, Cubs Bingo presented by Budweiser and more.


This thrilling offseason moment kicks off Friday, January 12, with Opening Ceremony where players and alumni will be introduced as well as the new Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame Class of 2024. The late night-style talk show, Off the Mound with Ryan Dempster presented by Budweiser, will return due to popular demand. The first day of Cubs Convention will end with Harry Carayoke presented by Budweiser.


On Saturday, January 13, fans can attend engaging sessions, including the Baseball Operations Update with Jed Hoyer and Carter Hawkins presented by Wintrust; A Conversation with Craig Counsell presented by Wintrust; Pitchers Session: On the MoundHitters Session: At the Plate; The Sweet ’16 Squad featuring members of the Cubs World Series Championship team; and The Core from ’84 featuring members of the Cubs 1984 team on their 40th anniversary. Returning Cubs Convention favorites will include the Kids Only Press Conference presented by Advocate Children’s Hospital, a live recording of The Compound podcast with Cubs outfielder Ian Happ, Cubs Bingo presented by Budweiser and Harry Carayoke presented by Budweiser. Late Saturday afternoon, guests are invited to a reception where they can chat with Cubs Executive Chairman Tom Ricketts over a beverage.


Due to the popularity of the archive display rooms at the last Cubs Convention, fans can expect to see these history-filled rooms return Friday and Saturday only. Explore different archive rooms filled with never-before-seen jerseys, bats, baseballs, trophies, awards and more from within the Cubs Archives collection. To pay tribute to the Cubs 1984 team, an archive display room will provide an inside look into the making of the Ryne Sandberg statue with sculptor Lou Cella and feature artifacts from the team including game-used jerseys, game-used hats, helmets, bats and more.

Woven into the archive display rooms will be new interactive elements, including master classes taught by Cubs historian, Ed Hartig, where fans can earn their own master class certificate as well as the return of the digital Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame experience from the Gallagher Way pop-up where fans can create their own Hall of Fame plaque.


Cubs Authentics auctions will host a live auction Friday and Saturday at Cubs Convention, with items up for bid including Justin Steele’s 16th win game-used jersey, Seiya Suzuki’s 19th home run game-used jersey, Dansby Swanson’s game-used jersey worn for four games, Ian Happ’s game-used jersey worn for seven games and more.


Returning for a second year will be the popular youth baseball and softball clinic. The clinic offers the opportunity for youth of all skills and abilities to enhance their baseball or softball skills through instruction provided by alumni, players and Cubs Nike RBI coaches. Limited spots remain for Sunday’s clinic so interested fans should act fast to secure their spot.

The Cubs also will honor Martin Luther King, Jr. and celebrate his life and legacy with a thoughtful conversation with alumni Sunday, January 14.

Weekend passes are still available for $125 with children ages 3-10 receiving a discounted rate of $100. Hotel packages can be purchased for one or two nights at the Sheraton Grand Chicago, with up to four discounted weekend passes included. A portion of the proceeds from Cubs Convention will benefit Cubs Charities and its mission to mobilize the power of sport to champion youth, families and communities.

Cubs fans can stay up-to-date on the Cubs Convention schedule, download the floorplan and receive live updates via a new Cubs Convention app. Information on how to access and use the app with be shared with attendees closer to the event date. Additional details regarding how to participate in the interactive elements, live auction and youth baseball and softball clinic will be shared at a later date.

To view the current Cubs Convention programming lineup, purchase weekend passes or secure a hotel package, visit

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