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The IHL Minnesota Moose, who already have played out their weekend home schedule for the season, are concerned about the lack of weekend dates they have at the St. Paul Civic Center. The gate difference for the team between weekend and weekday dates is $50,000. Columnist Charley Waters warns the Civic Center "better find more weekend dates for next season" if they want to keep the team from moving to the Target Center (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 1/31).
The new owners of the A's, Stephen Schott and Kenneth Hofmann, "moved a big step closer to keeping the team in Oakland" on Tuesday when public agencies in Alameda County approved a new lease agreement between the team and the Oakland Coliseum. The agreement, which would keep the A's in the East Bay until 2004, was approved by Alameda County supervisors, the Oakland City Council and the Coliseum Commissioner. Schott and Hofmann, who agreed to purchase the team from the Haas family for $85M, still need to line up financing and get approval from MLB owners. City and county officials have promised taxpayers the new arrangement will not cost them anything. However, the contract is based in part on the sale of naming rights for about $450,000 per year (Frances Dinkelspiel, SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 2/1).
In an effort to raise "desperately" needed funds to renovate Candlestick Park in San Francisco, the city is offering to sell the stadium's name to the highest-bidding corporate sponsor. By selling the name, the city "could bring in as much as $2 million a year for stadium renovations." Jack Immendorf, Chair of S.F.'s Recreation and Parks Commission which overseas the stadium: "It would raise considerable funds at no cost to the city and no cost to the ticket holders. It's advertising, pure and simple." In a letter to eight major local companies, San Francisco Mayor Frank Jordan said the city expects to spend between $21-26M renovating Candlestick for the 1999 Super Bowl. The companies: The Gap, Chevron, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Pacific Telesis, AirTouch Communications, Charles Schwab and Transamerica (Erin McCormick, SAN FRANCISCO EXAMINER, 2/1).
Cleveland's Stadium Task Force unveiled a proposed three- year, $130M renovation plan for Cleveland Stadium yesterday that calls for fewer pillars, improved concessions and toilet facilities, wider concourses and new seats. "The entire inside of the Stadium would be gutted, except for the structural steel." Total seating capacity would be reduced to 71,000, with 25,000 closer to the field (Task Force).