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Old 10-23-2012, 09:28 PM
SoxThunder SoxThunder is offline
WSI Regular
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: St. Charles, IL
Posts: 114

Here are my suggestions to improve the ballpark experience:

1. Hire friendly, personable guest services staff. I know these are low-paying jobs, but why do these people have to just stand there like statues and never smile? The lowest moment that I witnessed was last year when an older gentleman tripped and fell down several stairs at the Gate 5 exit. All the guest services people just stood there and watched, silently holding their "thank you, fans" signs. For goodnes sakes, help the man up and help gather his belongings! Does this really require training?

2. Offer free wifi at the Cell. Some of the diehards might hate this and say, "watch the game and put away the smartphones!" But face it...younger fans love posting pictures on Facebook during the game, tweeting, or watching in-game stats/replays on MLB At Bat app. My Internet browser (Verizon iPhone) almost never works when I'm at the Cell. Maybe US Cellular does this on purpose to make you think about changing cell phone carriers! The Sox should give incentives/prizes to people who "check in" on Facebook, Yelp or other social media. You can create that "buzz" if you're constantly seeing your friends "checked in" at the ballpark. Seeing this on your newsfeed makes you wish you were where the action is.

3. Have the in-game entertainment be more fan interactive. For example, ask trivia questions about Sox history or trivia about what the correct umpire ruling would be in an odd situation. Fans could text their response and the first 10 people to get it right would get a text response: "Correct! Please proceed to guest relations to get 2 ticket vouchers." Or creative. Just please, no more horrible fan dancing on the dugouts.

4. Lastly, (going along with the idea of making the broadcast more "educational"), make the pregame experience educational as well...especially for kids. Have Bulls/Sox training academy coaches host mini training sessions to teach kids how to run bases, how to bunt, how to field, how to throw, hitting off a tee, etc. Do this with wiffle or tennis balls to reduce injuries if necessary. Make use of the fields and grass at beautiful Armour Square Park. People love baseball more (and go to more games) if they appreciate the fine details and fundamentals of the game. I know they have the Fundamentals deck in the park, but there's not much space there.
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