I was talking to some close friends of mine over a coffee stop we have each month, about the things we’ve seen and done and this one came up – Promotions.
In the Independent Leagues, you’re constantly scratching for ways to make money. It’s really a hand-to-mouth existence every waking minute. To start and run the engines of interest and gate receipts, here were some of things that we did.
- Every outfield fence was at least 350 ft. If the left field wall was measured at only 200 feet … nope, it was painted with large block numbers 350 FT. Center field only measured 250 feet … nope, paint it 450FT in large block numbers.
- Everyone in the lineup batted 125 or 180, but the announcer would call … and now up Bill Weeks. Bill’s batting 385 coming into this game.
- We never really had a gold glove award, per say, but when a guy came up to bat … and now up jimmy Culp. Jimmy leads the club in five gold gloves to his credit and the franchise’s MVP.
- Then we’d have an announcer say …” folks, some lucky fan is going to find a free grocery gift certificate in their box of popcorn tonight. “ Turns out the gift certificates were for more popcorn.
- We ran out of ticket stubs for one night game. We ended up purchasing a role of stubs from a printer at the 11th hour. The admission stubs turned out to be for a strip club – pole dancers, the works. Fortunately the game was being played in New Jersey, the strip club was in LA. Nevertheless, it did get attention. Personally, I think the box office did so well was just because the patrons wanted to pictures on the back of the tickets. Come to think of, I got two box seats myself.
- One stadium that we played at had a flag pole outside the stadium, near the front walkway. So, inside the park you really couldn’t see the flag. When the National Anthem was played, everyone had to turn around and face a row of upper deck seats, along with an electric advertising board. As the Anthem was played – so was a premium paid spot of advertising that scrolled along the display board, just long enough to last until the Anthem stop’d.