Organist Sue Nelson reminds us why we're proud to be Twins fans

She's been the Twins organist since 1999.

WCCO Radio Newsroom
October 09, 2019 - 3:27 am

Many Twins fans know of Sue Nelson, who has been the team’s organist for the last two decades. 

She has what she calls the “best seat in the house,” working in the warm red glow of the Two Gingers Pub on the terrace level of Target Field, overlooking home plate. 

A native of southern Minnesota, she grew up watching neighborhood yard ball. Her first job as an organist was with the Minnesota Northstars, and after they moved to Dallas, she did a stint with the Minnesota Strikers, a soccer team, and played countless highschool games. She initially worked with the Twins as a sub, but took over in 1999 when her predecessor retired. Fast forward 11 years, and she was there to play “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” during the seventh inning stretch of opening day at Target Field on April 20, 2010 — a memory she recalls in the above video. Listen to a snippet of her work that day here:

It hasn’t been an easy week to be a Twins fan, but here’s something that may be worth keeping in mind for some. As the Monday playoff game against the Yankees slipped further and further away from the home team, Nelson, 74, never lost her enthusiasm. She never stopped talking to fans or smiling for the selfies they took. She kept playing with gusto when it was her turn to rally the crowd, and when the DJ took the reins, she clapped along. 

While free agent Jake Odorizzi’s return may be uncertain, Nelson certainly plans to be back next year. She hopes it’s with the same instrument she’s always used, with the back covered in drawings school children gave her when she visited for assemblies. 

“Every once and awhile, somebody will say, ‘Why don’t they buy you a new organ?’ Then it would sound like the DJ’s music, because that’s what organs do these days,” she said. “This organ sounds like it did way back 40 years ago at Twins games, and I’m playing the same stuff, the same cheers, you know?”

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