The sale of the team to a new ownership group hasn’t even been completed, yet changes are already underway at high Class A Lancaster.
The California League affiliate is notoriously one of the most blustery ballparks in the minors, where high winds blowing out to right field have produced inflated home run totals and also demoarlized many a pitcher.
Yet the JetHawks continue to try and find ways to turn the unfavorable ballpark conditions to their advantage, including a new promotion under new management: the Polar Bear Club.
April typically provides a double-whammy of conditions to baseball fans in the Antelope Valley: high winds coupled with near-freezing gametime temperatures. The result has typically been the team drawing its lowest attendance total in the opening month of the season. They’re hoping that changes this year.
Fans who sign up for the Polar Bear Club will have access to a heated section and will receive a free hot chocolate and blanket in addition to discounted ticket prices for April home games at Clear Channel Stadium.
"We know from history that it’s pretty cold and windy here in April," first-year Lancaster general manager Larry Thornhill said. "Now there is a way to keep you warm here. Even though it is cold out, we’re going to have fun."
The heated section will feature several outdoor space heaters. In addition to other perks, fans will receive discounted prices at the team’s souvenir shop. The all-inclusive cost of the club is $120.
The JetHawks were sold in January by Peter Carfagna to an ownership group headed by Larry Little and Jeff Katofsky.
Like most teams around the minors, the JetHawks have not avoided feeling the pinch of the recession. Sponsorship sales "are soft," Thornhill said, but ticket sales and renewals are actually on the rise.
Promotions like the Polar Bear Club, which has gotten positive early response since being unveiled last Friday, can only help, Thornhill said.
"Billboard sponsorships are down, but we are experiencing some ticket rejuvenation," Thornhill said. "We’re out talking more with people. We’ve created some excitement, a rejuvenation of the community. We’re getting them renewing early and buying."
Comments will be monitored prior to being added to the site. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be rejected. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed.
We have chosen to open up commenting to everyone, so comment away! We want to hear from each and every one of you! Leave a comment.
About This Blog
Syndicate This Blog
Search This Blog