50 Most Influential: Introduction 50 Most Influential: No. 34 Ditching ’burbs for Detroit NHL brings doughnuts, signs Dunkin’ deal 50 Most Influential: No. 16 ‘Suite’ gifts, and even a few ugly ones Group builds platform for hockey award 50 Most Influential: No. 38 Alabama scores some serious bling Sports Media: NFL steps into esports
SBJ/Jan. 24-30, 2011/Coast to CoastPrint All
Local caterer wins U.S. Open contract
Ridgewells, a locally based catering and event company, won a three-year contract to provide catering services to the U.S. Open golf tournament. The event this year will be held at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda in June, followed by The Olympic Club in San Francisco in 2012 and Merion Golf Club near Ardmore, Pa., in 2013.
Investors adding $1M to Dream
The WNBA Atlanta Dream has two new members in the team’s ownership group. Mary Brock, a philanthropist and wife of Coca-Cola Enterprises Chairman and CEO John Brock, and Kelly Loeffler, IntercontinentalExchange vice president of investor relations and corporate communications, are investing a total of $1 million in the franchise, according to a report in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Most Bandits games televised
The Buffalo Bandits will have 13 of their 16 NLL games broadcast live on Time Warner Cable SportsNet this year. Home games at HSBC Arena will be produced as part of a simulcast of radio play-by-play, and road games will be produced by the home team’s network or the in-house broadcast feed.
Bisons plan biggest display
The Buffalo Bisons are replacing an 11-year-old video board at Coca-Cola Field with a new 80-by-33-foot LED HD board from Daktronics. The new board should be ready when the Bisons begin their 2011 season in April. The team is investing $2.5 million on the new display board, which reportedly will be the largest in minor league baseball.
Bobcats: Lowers up, uppers down
The Charlotte Bobcats are raising some ticket prices next season. Prices will increase 10 percent to 15 percent on 2,500 seats in the lower level at Time Warner Cable Arena. Prices for all tickets in the upper bowl, almost 9,000 seats, will be reduced 13 percent to 20 percent for the 2011-12 season.
Duke Energy already has courtside signage in place at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Bobcats entered into a new multiyear marketing partnership with Duke Energy. The deal provides the company with in-arena and courtside rotational signage, a customized concourse window box, scoreboard video vignettes, digital presence at bobcats.com, and a drive-to-website promotion and contest.
Multitour Reds caravan rolls out
The 2011 Cincinnati Reds Caravan kicks off this week and is scheduled to make 15 fan stops in four states covering more than 2,600 miles over four days. The caravan, presented by CincinnatiUSA.com, consists of three separate tours traveling simultaneously through Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia.
Reds add MusclePharm
MusclePharm agreed to sponsor the Reds as the MLB club’s official nutritional supplement. Former NFL player Brad Pyatt is MusclePharm’s president and CEO.
Clemson planning $50M facilities boost
Clemson University plans to invest $50 million into athletic facilities in an effort to keep its programs competitive, according to a report in The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier. The projects will be funded through private gifts and athletic revenue, according to the report.
Indians embark on mall tour
The Cleveland Indians’ 2011 Tribe on Tour effort will feature players, coaches, staff and broadcasters along with interactive activities at four Northeast Ohio malls. Fans attending the tour, scheduled for Friday through Monday, will have the opportunity to participate in baseball-themed activities and create a play-by-play DVD.
Jackets, Fox grant ‘All Access’
The Columbus Blue Jackets and television partner Fox Sports Ohio launched the Blue Jackets All-Access Pass sweepstakes. Followers of the team’s Facebook page have the chance to win various team experiences. The first prize offers one winner and three guests a VIP game experience on Feb. 16, when the Jackets host the Los Angeles Kings.
Wendy’s marks Jackets anniversary
The Blue Jackets and Wendy’s are celebrating the team’s 10th season by introducing a limited-edition, commemorative 40-ounce cup. Wendy’s has been affiliated with the Blue Jackets since the team’s inaugural season in 2000-01.
FC Dallas tickets stay the course
FC Dallas is not increasing ticket prices for the 2011 season after appearing in the MLS Cup in 2010. The club sold out 550 all-you-can-eat season tickets priced at $486.
Paciolan partners with university
Paciolan agreed to a partnership with the University of Denver, which will use the company’s ticketing, marketing and fundraising services in both its athletics and performing arts departments.
CSN Mid-Atlantic producing AHL events
Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic will produce the telecast of the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross at Giant Center in Hershey, Pa. The event, with the All-Star Skills Competition set for Sunday and the All-Star Game to follow next Monday, will air live on TSN in Canada and on a network of television partners in the United States.
The Texans’ average ticket price this past
season ranked 16th in the league.
Texans hold ticket prices steady
The Houston Texans are not increasing ticket prices for the first time since 2006, according to a report in the Houston Chronicle. Fans also will be able to get refunds for any preseason or regular-season games that are canceled because of a lockout, in accordance with a leaguewide policy announced in November.
Hospital aligns with Royals
The University of Kansas Hospital will become the official medical provider for the Kansas City Royals. The hospital and its partner, The University of Kansas Physicians, will be with the team at spring training beginning next month. The hospital and the Royals will conduct three Health Awareness Days at Kauffman Stadium this season as well as provide first aid for fans.
Fullerton, Flyers negotiating on facility
The Fullerton (Calif.) City Council voted unanimously to enter into an exclusive negotiating agreement with the Orange County Flyers for the development of a multiuse sports facility to be built where Amerige Park is located. The venue currently hosts amateur and youth baseball games. The Flyers have been associated with Fullerton since they started playing their home games in the Golden Baseball League in 2005 at California State University, Fullerton.
AFL team to rebrand as Mustangs
The AFL Milwaukee Iron is planning to rebrand itself as the Milwaukee Mustangs when the 2011 season begins in March, according to a report in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Team ownership is planning a news conference later this month to announce the rebranding and release of the new team logo.
Prudential passes Izod in show tickets
The Prudential Center was a hot ticket for concerts and shows last year, doing better than the Izod Center in the Meadowlands for the first time since the Newark arena opened four years ago, according to a report in the Newark Star-Ledger. Pollstar reported that Prudential Center sold 358,984 tickets, making it the 24th busiest arena in the world.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
A thankful Ellison said: “My whole world stops on Sundays for the Saints games.”
Saints fan gets Pro Bowl surprise
New Orleans Saints fan Beth Ellison of Terrytown, La., thought she was going to do an interview with team ticket sales executive Michael Stanfield last Tuesday. Instead, Saints kicker Garrett Hartley showed up at her front door to inform her that she had won an all-expenses paid trip for two to this year’s Pro Bowl in Hawaii. Ellison won the trip after she entered a contest by filling out a survey card that was handed out at each Saints home game this season.
Changes for Superdome, Saints seats
The final phase of a Superdome remodeling plan will begin this week, according to a report in The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune. Changes include a lower bowl reconfiguration with 3,500 new seats, widening the plaza concourse, building two bunker club lounges and adding concession stands. In addition, for next season, the Saints are raising prices on a block of 4,500 plaza-level seats at the stadium that are being upgraded to premium seats, but other ticket prices will not go up.
Garden, Alpari form partnership
Alpari, a provider of online foreign exchange trading services, and Madison Square Garden formed a new multiplatform marketing partnership. The deal makes Alpari an official partner of the New York Knicks, New York Rangers and Madison Square Garden.
Magic scratch-off has cash, trips
The Orlando Magic has teamed with the Florida Lottery to offer a themed scratch-off game. The $5 game has cash prizes ranging from $5 to $100,000. In addition, through March 22, players can enter nonwinning tickets in a second-chance promotion for prizes that include trips, VIP experiences, a game suite and team merchandise.
CSN ‘Lives’ at home show
Local cable sports channel Comcast SportsNet promoted its new tag line, “We Live Philly Sports,” with a feature room at the Philadelphia Home Show, which ran Jan. 15-23 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Featured in the room were official Spectrum and Veterans Stadium seats, memorabilia from the Flyers, Sixers, Eagles and Phillies, historic photos, and other sports items.
NLL Wings invite alumni
The Philadelphia Wings have a seasonlong celebration of their 25th anniversary in the National Lacrosse League planned for this year. The Wings will invite players back from their six championship teams for appearances during home games to recognize their accomplishments.
Suns freeze or lower season-ticket prices
There will be no increase in prices for Phoenix Suns season-ticket plans for the 2011-12 season. More than 35 percent of the seats at US Airways Center will be reduced for those who renew by Feb. 17. This is the third consecutive year without price increases.
Fans can navigate all aspects of the tournament.
The Arizona Diamondbacks will host the seventh annual Subway D-backs FanFest on Feb. 12 at Chase Field. The free event will include autographs and photograph sessions with current players, coaches, alumni and broadcasters. Autograph sessions with D-backs personnel will require a $5 donation to the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation. Children 12 and younger can receive free autographs.
Tour event app developed; Mercedes named
The PGA Tour’s Waste Management Phoenix Open has a new iPhone app developed by Scottsdale, Ariz.-based DeFi Global. The free app includes a map of the TPC Scottsdale course, scoreboard and weather updates, social media features, and a link to the tournament’s e-commerce site to purchase tickets. The tournament is scheduled for Feb. 3-6. In other news, Mercedes-Benz will be the official vehicle of the 2011 and 2012 tournaments. Mercedes-Benz dealers will provide 150 courtesy vehicles during tournament week to transport golfers, tournament officials and other tournament staff.
Pirates go for 21 again
For the second consecutive season, the Pittsburgh Pirates have launched an effort called 21 Prizes in 21 Days to give fans purchasing season tickets the chance to be entered into drawings for prizes. One winner will be selected every day from Saturday through Feb. 18. Prizes include throwing out the first pitch at a Pirates home game, a Nintendo Wii System, and watching Pirates batting practice from the field at PNC Park.
New marquee goes up at arena
Daktronics has designed, manufactured and installed a new LED marquee display outside Dunkin’ Donuts Center. Both sides of the addition measure approximately 9 feet high by 16 feet wide, and vehicle and pedestrian traffic has a clear view of the marquee.
Chargers lower some ticket prices
The San Diego Chargers are lowering the price of about 10 percent of the tickets in Qualcomm Stadium while keeping the same prices for all other seats for a fourth consecutive season. The 6,500 View Level end zone season tickets, priced at $63 a game a year ago, now cost $54.
Pop Warner gets Active
San Diego-based Active Network will serve as the official technology partner for the Pop Warner youth organization for the 2011 season. Active Network provides online management programs and services that can aid coaches, including LeagueOne roster-creation tools, a free eteamz website, and association management software with schedule, score and statistic tracking.
Showtime shooting Giants show
Showtime plans to produce a “Hard Knocks”-style series centered on the San Francisco Giants. The series is being shot over the course of 10 months. Producers will gather footage from the homes of Giants players and employees. Showtime plans to premiere the series around Opening Day of the 2011 season. Showtime and MLB Productions are collaborating on the series.
Sounders selling new away jersey
Seattle Sounders FC have begun selling replicas of the MLS team’s new 2011 away jersey, according to a report in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. The jerseys add shale to a color palette that already includes rave green, capital blue and yellow.
Raceway piles up recycling numbers
Infineon Raceway collected more than 67 tons, or 135,017 pounds, of recycling material during its 2010 racing season. The raceway, which partnered with the Conservation Corps North Bay on the effort, has collected more than 208 tons since the inception of its recycling program in 2004. The track hosted race weekends for NASCAR, NHRA, Izod IndyCar Series and AMA Pro Road Racing last year.
Towson puts arena timeline online
Towson University launched TigerArena.com, a website that will chronicle the on-campus venue’s construction from its May 2011 groundbreaking through its spring 2013 opening. The site will provide updates on the 5,000-seat arena’s construction progress and include information on branding opportunities, corporate sponsorships, and the purchase of private suites and club-level seats.