Denise RichardsonAnthony Guyer, right, of Seventh Inning Stretch in Cooperstown, sells souvenirs Sunday to the Anderson family of Frankfort, Ill. From left are Roxanne, Robert, Peyton and Ryan.

COOPERSTOWN _ Sales were good along Main Street during this year's Induction Weekend, about 10 merchants said during a lull Sunday afternoon as the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ceremonies were in progress.

The weekend, traditionally the busiest of the year, netted retail traffic at or above levels last year, merchants said.

But business from Cooperstown Dreams Park has been keeping cash registers ringing during the week, several retailers said, generating a different and significant business cycle.

And the standout busiest weekend remains the year Cal Ripken Jr. was inducted into the Hall of Fame. A record 75,000 people came to Cooperstown in 2007 to see the induction of Ripken and Tony Gwynn.

"That kind of spoiled everybody," said Chuck Brucker, owner of Coaches Corner at 134 Main St.

Hall of Fame officials estimated Sunday's crowd at 18,000 people.

Several merchants said Hall of Fame classes in the near-future hold potential to attract large numbers of fans with dollars to spend.

"It will be a little while before we see a Cal Ripken year," said Connie Haney, owner with her husband, Tim, of Cooperstown Bat Co. at 118 Main St. "But I think we do see that in our future."

On Sunday, at Clark Sports Center not far from the museum on Main Street, Barry Larkin, former shortstop for the Cincinnati Reds, was inducted in the Hall of Fame. The late third baseman Ron Santo, a standout for the Chicago Cubs, also joined the legends of baseball.

Meanwhile, stores along Main Street awaited post-ceremony retail activity. Fans could choose from thousands of souvenirs, including autographed baseballs, photographs and other memorabilia, T-shirts, baseball bats and commemorative postal stamps. Some merchants had tables set up on sidewalks.

Robert and Roxanne Anderson of Frankfort, near Chicago, bought two induction cards bearing Santo's image at a table outside Seventh Inning Stretch at 137 Main St.

The Andersons strolled along village thoroughfare Sunday with their son Ryan, 14, and daughter, Peyton, 8, while their son Logan, 12, was at Cooperstown Dreams Park. Ryan said his time at camp last year was "the best baseball experience I ever had," and his mother said they appreciated the relaxed pace of Cooperstown when shopping in the village last year.

"It's just enjoyable to be down here," she said.

Ohio, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Illinois, Ontario, Michigan: License plates on cars parked along Main Street reflected that fans drove hundreds of miles to visit the historic capital of baseball on Induction Weekend.

Vin Russo, owners of Mickey's Place, 74 Main St., said two main factors influence attendance at Induction weekend _ the tenure of a Hall of Famer with one team and the driving distance of that player's team from Cooperstown.

Sales Friday and Saturday were better than a year ago, Russo said, and business after Sunday's Induction Ceremony would determine overall results.

"The weekend's not over yet," Russo said.

Business was 200 percent better than last year, said Scott Morley, manager at Extra Innings at 54 Main St. Sales were brisk for T-shirts designed by the store and TCMA Ltd. baseball induction cards with a photo of a player and room for a signature or commemorative stamp.

"It's been excellent," Morley said. "We're very pleased."

Ian Porto, owner of Tin Bin Alley at 114 Main St., a shop that sells old-fashioned candies, fudge, signs and gift items, said sales were average during the weekend.

"No complaints," he added. "Each year is different."

The Cooperstown Diner at 136½ Main St. can accommodate about 20 patrons, which meant the restaurant was busy during the weekend, and sometimes there was a line of guests outside, manager Cindy Bissell said. Business also was steady at the Back Alley Grille, 8 Hoffman Lane, which opened this year, she said.

Some customers return year after year, giving a reunion quality to the weekend, Bissell said.

"It's kind of like seeing family," she said. "We look forward to it."

Russ Smith, who has collected garbage in the village for more than 35 years, said traffic was down from a typical year.

"It wasn't as busy as normal because there wasn't as much garbage," Smith said Sunday afternoon while at the Cooperstown Diner.

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