A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from April 17, 2015
“What runs around a baseball field, but never moves?"/"A fence.”

A popular baseball riddle is:

Q. What runs around a baseball field, but never moves?
A. A fence.


The joke has been cited in print since at least 1990. However, this wasn’t originally a riddle about a baseball field. “What runs all around a pasture, but never moves?” was cited in print in 1957. “What runs all around the yard, but never moves?” was cited in 1973. “What runs around a field, but never moves?” was cited in 1979.


8 October 1957, St. Louis Daily Livestock Reporter (East St. Louis, IL), “For Juniors,” pg. 4, col. 4:
What runs all around a pasture but never moves? The fence.

Google News Archive
3 July 1972, The Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg, VA), “Fun Time—Riddle Box,"pg. 20, col. 2:
What runs around the yard and always stands still?
A fence.

27 August 1973, Dunkirk Evening Observer (Dunkirk-Fredonia, NY), “Mini Jokes,” pg. 18, col. 1:
Q. What runs all around the yard but never moves?
A. Fence!

Google Books
What’s to Eat?: And Other Questions Kids Ask about Food
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Washington, DC: Government Printing Office
1979
Pg. 53:
Sue: What runs around a field, but never moves?
Lou: A fence.

1 July 1990, Cedar Rapids (IA) Gazette, “Send Me a Riddle,” comics page:
Q. WHAT RUNS AROUND A BASEBALL FIELD BUT NEVER MOVES?
A. A FENCE.
JESSICA CORSI, PALMER, MA

Twitter
Comedy Central JOTD
‏@ccjokeoftheday
Baseball Field - What goes all the way around a baseball field but never moves?

The fence http://godark.us/tu164926
2:00 AM - 17 Sep 2009

Twitter
Jokes of the day
‏@jokesofthedaydn
What goes all the way around a baseball field but never moves? The fence
5:10 PM - 17 Apr 2015

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CitySports/Games • Friday, April 17, 2015 • Permalink