SBJ/April 25 - May 1, 2011/Coast to Coast

Coast to Coast: Cavs reward fans with prizes

ARLINGTON, TEXAS
Rangers still operating lots, pricing

The Texas Rangers will continue operating the parking lots, and prices will remain the same, at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, according to a report in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Tarrant County state District Judge Ken Curry told former team owner Tom Hicks that he needs to continue honoring a land-use agreement with the team that was reached for the 2010 and 2011 seasons, according to the report. Another hearing on the issue is set for Thursday.

ATLANTA
HTM opens Atlanta office

Cleveland-based Home Team Marketing opened an Atlanta office to be headed up by Kevin Shea. Shea joined HTM in 2007 as an account executive and previously worked for HTM in Charlotte.

GETTY IMAGES
TD Garden has been packed with Bruins faithful throughout the winning season.
BOSTON

Bruins break attendance records

The Boston Bruins officially sold out every regular-season game at TD Garden this season. The total TD Garden attendance of 720,165 in 41 games was the highest average season attendance in the club’s history (17,565) and was also the highest total mark, eclipsing the 1995-96 total of 716,443 (17,474 average) in 41 games.

BUFFALO
Bisons swing away on MLB Network

The Buffalo Bisons will appear live on MLB Network for three games during the 2011 season. The broadcasts are part of a 10-game International League schedule that will also include the Triple-A All-Star Game on July 13 from Salt Lake City. The Bisons are the Class AAA affiliate of the New York Mets.

CHARLOTTE
NASCAR hall launching summer campaign

The NASCAR Hall of Fame will launch a new promotional campaign this summer using the tag line “Cure for the Common Summer.” During an advisory meeting this month, hall executives said future marketing efforts will target 3.1 million avid NASCAR fans living within 200 miles of the facility. Those fans have only made up 45 percent of attendees to date.

CHICAGO
Dreams Inc. to manage MLS team’s retail

Dreams Inc. will manage retail, game-day and online merchandise operations for the Chicago Fire in a new deal. This includes operation of the Fire’s first in-stadium retail store at Toyota Park. Dreams Inc. also will oversee operations of satellite stores and other retail events.

XSport sponsoring popular half marathon

Fitness chain XSport Fitness will title sponsor the Competitor Group’s Rock ’n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon benefiting the American Cancer Society. The third annual event will take place Aug. 14 in downtown Chicago and has already sold out for both 2011 and 2012.

CINCINNATI
Taxpayers still on hook for stadium fund

NBA PHOTOS / DAVID LIAM KYLE
Children of season-ticket holders were invited to stand with players during the national anthem.
A much-touted deal to have the Cincinnati Reds and Bengals contribute nearly $10 million to the fund that pays for their stadium construction is dead, according to a report in the Cincinnati Enquirer. The vote from the Hamilton County (Ohio) Commission means taxpayers will continue to shoulder the burden of bailing out the county’s stadium fund on their own, according to the report.

CLEVELAND
Cavs, sponsors bestow gifts on fans

The Cleveland Cavaliers gave awaymore than $1 million in prizes during their Fan Appreciation Night
CLEVELAND CAVALIERS
Earlier in the day Cavs players and staff were joined by Kia Motors at a Marathon station to give out $25 gas cards and assorted gifts.
on April 13. Prizes included a mortgage payment from Quicken Loans, a 2011 Kia Soul and a trip to New Orleans courtesy of the Cleveland Horseshoe Casino. Every fan received a reusable gift bag filled with gift cards, coupons and discounts for local businesses.

CORPUS CHRISTI
Hooks fans give to Operation S.O.S.

During the 2010 Corpus Christi Hooks season, Whataburger Field patrons contributed almost a tonand a half of nonperishable items to the Food Bank of Corpus Christi and more than $3,000 in cash and donations to Operation S.O.S. (Supply Our Students). The ballpark and the Hooks are planning to put the same drive in place for 2011.

DENVER
The Il Porchetta is slow-roasted pork loin topped with rapini, provolone and Italian long hot peppers.
The Manzo Panino (top) is smoked brisket topped with horseradish cream, provolone, banana peppers and fire-roasted tomatoes.
Crusty baguettes up for vote

The Colorado Rockies and concessionaire Aramark are asking fans to decide what new item belongs on the Coors Field menu permanently. Online voting continues through July 10 between Il Porchetta, a pork loin baguette sandwich, and Manzo Panino, a shaved brisket sandwich. Fans can taste the finalists through July 3. The winning item will remain on the menu throughout the 2011 season.

GREEN BAY
New ‘Titletown’ facilities considered

The area around Lambeau Field could be home to a new indoor football practice facility as well as a baseball stadium, according to a report in the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Among the concepts under consideration for a Titletown sports and entertainment district are a multiuse baseball venue, a new indoor practice facility and a hotel. The Packers have spent about $27 million over the past several years to purchase land near the stadium.

HOUSTON
Dynamo to play EPL Wanderers

The Houston Dynamo finalized negotiations to play the Bolton Wanderers of the English Premier League in Houston this summer in the Dynamo Charities Cup, according to a report in the Houston Chronicle. Former Dynamo star Stuart Holden, who moved to Houston from Scotland at the age of 10, transferred to Bolton last season.

KANSAS CITY, KAN.
Track effort benefits BackSnack program

Kansas Speedway is partnering with Harvesters — The Community Food Network to benefit Harvesters’ BackSnack program. Fans that attend the June 3 practice sessions for the Sprint Cup Series and Camping World Truck Series will be able to make a monetary donation to the BackSnack program when they enter the gates.

LA QUINTA, CALIF.
Humana to title sponsor Bob Hope Classic

Humana Inc. and the William J. Clinton Foundation formed an eight-year partnership with the PGA Tour to sponsor the Bob Hope Classic golf tournament, beginning in 2012. Louisville, Ky.-based Humana will be the title sponsor of the event, which will be held Jan. 16-22.

MIAMI
Kumho promotes Heat playoffs

The Miami Heat and Kumho Tires launched a playoff-based marketing campaigned titled “Drive to the Championship.” The campaign includes game-day giveaways. Kumho also is conducting a text-to-win promotion in which two fans will be awarded two tickets each to the first two games of each Heat playoff round.

Heat partners with Hublot
The Miami Heat entered into a multiyear partnership with Hublot Watches. The deal marks Hublot’s first U.S. team sponsorship and complements Hublot’s earlier endorsement signing of Miami’s Dwyane Wade. Hublot becomes the official timekeeper of the Heat as well as the presenting sponsor for the premium entrances at AmericanAirlines Arena.

RICH GRAESSLE
Nautica President Karen Murray and Devils Arena Entertainment Chairman Jeff Vanderbeek (center) join New Jersey Devils alumni players at the Prudential Center fashion show last week.
NEWARK

Nautica hits runway for concert series

Prudential Center and Nautica announced the Nautica Concert Series at Prudential Center during a kickoff fashion show last week at the Newark arena. The partnership gives Nautica extended brand presence inside Prudential Center throughout the series. Nautica will establish a pop-up booth on the main concourse during all concerts that will feature Nautica merchandise for both display and sale. The concert series is the first music sponsorship held by Nautica.

NEW YORK
Two bidders walk away from Mets

Sources cited in a New York Post report said a group led by BTIG co-founder Steve Starker and Marquis Jet co-founder Ken Dichter as well as a second bidding group including SkyBridge Capital managing partner Anthony Scaramucci and 1-800-Flowers.com founder James McCann have both walked away from buying a minority stake in the New York Mets. That left SAC Capital Advisors founder Steve Cohen as the only active bidder as of early last week.

BlueShirtsUnited.com is Rangers 24/7.
Rangers launch online community

The New York Rangers launched an online community and social media platform, BlueShirtsUnited.com, that’s billed as a first-of-its-kind site for an NHL team. The site provides fans with 24/7 access to Rangers content including game highlights, photo galleries, online chats, and exclusive video clips of players, coaches and fans.

Knicks promoting Hain snacks
The New York Knicks and the Hain Celestial Group formed a multiyear marketing partnership to promote the company’s line of snacks. Terra Chips and Sensible Portions Straws and Chips will be available at Knicks games at Madison Square Garden.

OAKLAND
A’s flagship drops country format

The Oakland A’s new flagship radio station, KBWF-FM, has switched from a country music format to an all-sports format, a move expected to bring the team better radio exposure, according to a report in The Oakland Tribune. Rebranded KBWF SportsRadio 95.7 is also the broadcast partner of the San Jose Sharks.

ORLANDO
DeVos embracing the whiskers

Orlando Magic owner Rich DeVos, a clean-shaven man for more than 60 years, showed up for Game 1 of the Magic’s Eastern Conference playoff series against Atlanta with a playoff beard, according to a report in The Orlando Sentinel. The Magic players are growing beards as a show of unity, and DeVos, 85, joined the effort.

PHILADELPHIA
Cup designs include a QR code (at right) that takes fans to Phillies updates online.
Phillies, Acme add codes to cups

The Philadelphia Phillies and Acme Paper & Supply Co. teamed to add quick-response codes to drinking cups at Citizens Bank Park this season. The scanning of the QR codes will send fans to a website where they can view the Phillies’ schedule and get information about coming special events. Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

Phillies, WOGL start HD station
The Philadelphia Phillies and CBS Radio’s WOGL-FM launched Phillies 24/7, an offering they say is the first HD radio multicast station exclusively dedicated to an MLB team. Phillies 24/7 will air continuously throughout the year and feature live play-by-play of every regular-season Phillies game on-air at 98.1 WOGL HD4.

Kixx holding summer camps
The Philadelphia Kixx, who opted not to participate in the Major Indoor Soccer League this season, will still be hosting their summer soccer camp program this year. The Kixx Kamps will run June through August at dozens of locations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. The program is for players ages 4 to 18 at all skill levels and is run by Kixx players and coaches.

SACRAMENTO
Kings given filing extension

The NBA extended the relocation application deadline of the Sacramento Kings and owners Joe and Gavin Maloof to move to Anaheim. The deadline was moved to May 2 from April 17. The NBA issued the extension after hearing from Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson that local business leaders had committed $7 million in additional sponsorship and ticket sales to the team. In related news, billionaire Ron Burkle has expressed interest in buying the Kings or a replacement team for Sacramento.

SEATTLE
Mariners add $5 credit to some tickets

The Seattle Mariners are offering $5 credits for concessions and merchandise at Safeco Field with single-game tickets purchased in four areas of the ballpark during three TicketPlu$ Nights this season. Tickets for games on April 21, May 5, and June 2 come loaded with a $5 credit redeemable at any concession stand, the Team Store or merchandise kiosk. The credit is embedded in the bar code on each ticket.

SOMERSET, N.J.
WPS team signs Waterbucket

Waterbucket Media reached a deal with Sky Blue FC of Women’s Professional Soccer, making it the team’s official ticket sales organization with a focus on nontraditional soccer markets. Waterbucket will target an increase in group sales for the 2011 season, with staff members working both out of the team office in Somerset in addition to the company’s own headquarters in Easton, Pa.

TORONTO
Jays file claim for lost game income

The Toronto Blue Jays filed a claim for $470,854 (Canadian) from the Canadian federal government related to the city’s hosting of a G20 summit last June, according to a Canadian Press report. The high-level, high-security meetings forced the Blue Jays to relocate a series of games against Philadelphia to the Phillies’ home park.

GETTY IMAGES
The Whitecaps will be on the ball at Empire Field when Manchester City visits.
VANCOUVER

Whitecaps to host EPL club

The Vancouver Whitecaps will play an exhibition on July 18 at Empire Field against English Premier League club Manchester City, according to a report in The (Toronto) Globe and Mail. The Whitecaps are giving the game free to all season-ticket holders — about 15,000 fans whose original package did not include an international exhibition, according to the report.

WALLA WALLA, WASH.
Laht Neppur Brewing Co. sponsoring Sweets

Laht Neppur Brewing Co. signed on as a major sponsor of the West Coast League’s Walla Walla Sweets, a collegiate summer league club. Laht Neppur’s relationship with the Sweets began in 2010, when four varieties of its beer were served in Borleske Stadium. The new sponsorship includes naming rights to the venue’s new concessions area, near the Pepsi Pavilion in the Am Fam Zone.

Send your Coast to Coast news to: CoastToCoast@sportsbusinessjournal.com or phone (704) 973-1436.

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