SBJ/April 29-May 5, 2013/Coast to Coast

Coast to Coast

ARLINGTON, TEXAS
Rangers Republic offers a range of prizes.
Rangers Republic rewards fans

The Texas Rangers launched Rangers Republic, a free online rewards portal where fans can earn points and have the chance to win prizes. Points can be earned through social media interaction, visits to the team website and shopping in the online Rangers store.

ATLANTA
Bark by popular demand

The Atlanta Braves have scheduled two Bark in the Park events this season, the first this Sunday and the second on Sept. 15. An annual fan favorite at Turner Field, humans and canines will be treated to various activities. Tickets are $25 and include one human ticket and one dog ticket. Additional human tickets are available for $15.

BALTIMORE
Orioles add ‘Go Green’ initiatives

The Baltimore Orioles have a series of “Go Green” initiatives for 2013 in partnership with the Maryland Stadium Authority, Delaware North Sportservice and the Maryland Transit Administration. Plans include recycling, composting, bicycle parking, and promotion of bus, light rail and subway service.

CHICAGO
AEP plugs in for Cubs partnership

The Chicago Cubs and AEP Energy agreed to a three-year deal making AEP the official energy partner of the team and Wrigley Field and the official energy supplier of the ballpark. AEP gains signage on the left-field wall and is sponsoring electronic signs and announcements during Cubs pitching changes.

DES MOINES, IOWA
Wild moving Aeros out of Houston 
   
The Minnesota Wild is relocating its Houston Aeros AHL affiliate to Des Moines and renaming the team the Iowa Wild. The Iowa Wild will play at the 16,000-seat Wells Fargo Arena beginning next fall.

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CALIF.
TYR outfitting USA Water Polo

TYR was named the official outfitting partner of USA Water Polo through the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. TYR will provide apparel and competition gear for major international and domestic competitions over the next four years. Huntington Beach-based USA Water Polo will promote TYR through social media, webcasts and advertisements in the organization’s SkipShot Magazine.

KANSAS CITY
Speedway, Guard renew partnership

Kansas Speedway and the Kansas Army National Guard reached a deal to continue their partnership. Elements of the relationship include a swear-in ceremony for newly enlisted soldiers to the guard unit. The guard also will continue to partner with the speedway for the Kansas Army National Guard Pre-Race element at all of the track’s events this year.

MEMPHIS
Guard returns as MIR partner

The Tennessee National Guard is returning to Memphis International Raceway as a partner and as the title sponsor of the late-night Midnight Madness series of events this year. The guard unit will have a presence at the eight Midnight Madness events scheduled as well as having expo displays at several other events at the venue.

MILWAUKEE
Bucks tout post-lease plan

The Milwaukee Bucks informed NBA Commissioner David Stern that the franchise will have a plan that includes a new arena when the team’s lease at the BMO Harris Bradley Center expires in 2017, according to a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel report. The current lease extension, agreed to last fall, is the longest lease between the arena and the franchise in more than 10 years and the first multiyear extension since 2007.

NEW YORK
T-Mobile titling MLB fan fest

T-Mobile will be the title sponsor of MLB’s All-Star FanFest tied to this year’s All-Star Game at Citi Field. Scheduled for July 12-16 at the Javits Center, the FanFest will provide attractions that include Baseball Hall of Fame exhibits, batting cages, clinics and free autograph sessions with former players.

Jets use Monster.com for search
The New York Jets are turning to Monster.com to find a new website reporter, a search process both the team and job-search website will promote. Monster.com, an NFL sponsor in 2008 and 2009, said the initiative is part of its Cool Jobs program, in which it takes jobs that attract thousands of applicants and narrows the field to a group of roughly a dozen for an employer.

ORLANDO
Golf Channel opens new newsroom

Golf Channel unveiled a new newsroom to U.S. audiences last week as part of ongoing improvements to its Orlando headquarters. Viewers in Japan got a look at the news desk during coverage around the Masters.

PHILADELPHIA
‘Home Runs for Trees’ returns

The Philadelphia Phillies, Aramark and the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society will have a second season of the Home Runs for Trees program. For each home run hit by a Phillies player this season, PHS and its partners will plant a tree this fall in locations such as parks, urban neighborhoods and watershed areas. The program last year added 158 trees to the region.

U.S. Open protests conclude
Union protests regarding work being performed to prepare for this year’s U.S. Open at Merion Golf Club have ended. The end came after the U.S. Golf Association negotiated deals with two local labor unions that would provide work for about 40 Philadelphia-area carpenters who will set up flooring in spectator tents and for walkways.

A “May the 4th” ticket package includes 4 limited-edition T-shirts.
Soccer and Star Wars on Saturday

The Philadelphia Union will hold Star Wars Day during their Saturday match against the Seattle Sounders at PPL Park. The game will feature themed interactive games, contests and promotional giveaways. A grand-prize winner from a costume contest will be named honorary captain for the match and participate in pregame ceremonies on the field.
 
Smartlink to present MLL weekend
Staffing and site development firm Smartlink was named the official presenter of the 2013 MLL Championship Weekend, scheduled for Aug. 24-25 at PPL Park. The partnership will provide Smartlink with corporate visibility and assets including commercial time during the national broadcasts of matches on CBS Sports Network and ESPN2.

PITTSBURGH
Pirates reach deals with partners

The Pittsburgh Pirates agreed to sponsorship deals for the 2013 season with Arby’s, Moe’s Southwest Grill and StubHub. The deals provide for  promotions, signage and ballpark entertainment at PNC Park.

READING, PA.
Fightin Phils put up big board

The Class AA Reading Fightin Phils received a new 1,800-square-foot multimedia video board from TS Sports. The LED display at FirstEnergy Stadium is one of the largest video boards in Class AA and among the top 10 largest displays in all of Minor League Baseball.

TEMPE, ARIZ.
Vote for Sparky through Sunday

Arizona State University posted four versions of a new Sparky mascot online for a vote, according to an Arizona Republic report. Students, employees, alumni, season-ticket holders, Sun Devil Club members and donors will be able to vote through Sunday, and an official announcement is expected on May 7.



      COAST TO COAST — BEYOND THE COASTS



BEIJING
AC Milan touring China in May
Italian club AC Milan confirmed that it will tour China next month, according to a China Daily report. The Serie A side will play a Winoly Cup game against Dutch club Ajax at Beijing’s Workers’ Stadium on May 25. The Italian league ends May 20.

DOHA, QATAR
Number of World Cup stadiums in doubt
Bank of America Merrill Lynch said that Qatar may reduce the number of stadiums it builds for the 2022 World Cup as costs increase, according to a Bloomberg report. The U.S. bank said in a note to investors that Qatar is negotiating with FIFA to cut the number of venues to eight or nine from the 12 originally planned.

LONDON
An estimated crowd of half a million lined the London Marathon route.
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
Virgin Money extends with marathon
Virgin Money extended its title sponsorship of the London Marathon through 2017, according to a Reuters report. Virgin has been title sponsor of the race since 2010.

Wimbledon roof, prizes going up
The All England Club formally announced that a retractable roof will be built above No. 1 Court. The project is targeted for completion in time for Wimbledon in 2019. The tourney also announced an increase in prize money for this year to $34.5 million, up $9.9 million from last year. Singles champions will receive $2.4 million each.

Arsenal courting younger fans
Arsenal FC reacted to criticism about its ticket prices by bringing in a $15 teenagers-only section for next season, according to a (London) Evening Standard report. There will be between 800 and 1,000 seats in the section, which will not be in effect for Category A games.

MUNICH
Olympic Park project costs soar
The forecast cost for the renovation of Munich’s Olympic Park has reached a new high, at an estimated $612 million, according to a Merkur Online report. That new number is $93 million higher than an estimate from last year.

PARIS
Emirates partners with Roland Garros
Emirates Airline and Roland Garros reached a five-year agreement appointing Emirates as official partner of the French Open, starting with this year’s tournament, which begins next month. Emirates will have significant branding on center court at the venue as well as panels on competition courts.

RIO DE JANEIRO
Stadium effort nearly finished
Brazil’s Maracanã stadium is 97 percent ready after a recent sound and lighting test, according to an Inside World Football report. There are still some seats in the lower stands to be installed to reach full completion of the renovated venue, which will be a featured site for next year’s FIFA World Cup.

SÃO PAULO
Allianz eyes naming rights
Allianz is in talks to buy the naming rights to a soccer stadium under construction for Brazilian club Palmeiras, according to a Reuters report. The deal could become the first major football sponsorship in the country as it prepares to host the World Cup next year.

SINGAPORE
Group signs Key apparel sponsor
The Singapore Athletic Association signed Key Power International as an apparel sponsor. The company is the Singapore distributor of U.S. sports apparel company Brooks and of Australian compression brand 2XU, according to a Straits Times report. The three-year deal is valued at $150,000 annually.

SOCHI, RUSSIA
Construction cranes dominate the landscape at the Black Sea resort city.
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
Construction ban imposed
The Russian government imposed a ban on all new building in Sochi to fight the illegal construction of apartments and hotels in the city, according to a Moscow Times report. Alexander Tkachyov, governor of the Krasnodar region, which includes Sochi, said the ban was necessary because more than 800 buildings had gone up illegally in recent years.

TRIPOLI, LIBYA
FIFA lifts ban on games
FIFA lifted a ban on Libya hosting soccer matches despite the North African country still facing security issues after the 2011 war that ousted Muammar Gaddafi, according to a Reuters report. In a statement, FIFA said: “FIFA has decided to re-authorize matches in Libya, thus the two [World Cup] qualifiers in June will be played in Tripoli and in Benghazi.”

For more international news, visit www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/global.

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