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SBD/January 4, 2011/Franchises
Indians Pleased With Winter Park After Drawing More Than 50,000
Published January 4, 2011
The Indians concluded the debut run of their Snow Days winter carnival at Progressive Field with a final attendance of more than 50,000. The figure was not quite the 60,000 previously projected by club officials for the five-week run. Snow Days, however, proved effective at attracting not only children and families, but also young adults. "Our evening crowds were full of people aged 25-35, and that was a demo we did not necessarily expect," said Indians Senior Dir of Merchandising & Licensing Kurt Schloss, who served as Project Manager for Snow Days. Final financial figures for the effort are still being compiled, but revenue at least in the high-six figures was generated. A fiscal loss is likely and was expected due to the initial capital expense of equipment such as snow-making gear. An official decision on whether to revive the winter-themed attractions at the ballpark -- including snow tubing, ice skating and several other activities -- has not yet been made but future iterations are highly likely. "We definitely accomplished our goal of creating a family-friendly event that didn't exist before and brought people back down to downtown Cleveland," Schloss said. "The intent was never to have this as a one-year event." Prices for Snow Days ranged from $5 to a $100 family pass, and the revenue is not subject to MLB revenue-sharing rules. The peak day for Snow Days was Wed. Dec 29 with a draw of more than 4,000 (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal).
LET IT SNOW: MLB.com's Jordan Bastian noted the first year of Snow Days, which ended Sunday, "served somewhat as an experiment in an effort to find a way to utilize the stadium in the winter and as a way to hopefully create more revenue for the team." The Indians now "plan on going to work on finding ways to make it even better in the future." Snow Days also "caught the attention of other teams." A handful of other MLB clubs "asked if they could send people to get a first-hand look at Snow Days," and teams from other sports inquired as well. Bastian: "That is a sign that the Indians found an attractive event for their stadium's offseason" (MLB.com, 1/3).