By Randy York
What does a softball team that’s 11-0 at home this season and 14-0 at home stretching back to last season do to attract more doggone fans into the friendly confines of Bowlin Stadium? If you’re Nebraska and willing to try something different, you make Saturday “Bark in the Park” day and invite fans coming through the gates to bring their dogs to the ballpark with them. What a dog-eat-dog doubleheader that will be. Even if you don’t bring a dog to the 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. twin bill, make sure you bring your cameras. You can bet TV, newspaper and Internet cameras will be all over this opportunity.
How many times do vaccinated and leashed dogs get admitted into a game for free and get treated like royalty once they arrive? “More times than you’d think,” says Andy Wenstrand, who brought the idea to Nebraska’s Marketing Department. “Nearly every baseball team – minor league and major league – does a similar promotion. We felt a unique themed event would add value to our fans. We think it can give us an edge to stay unbeaten at Bowlin Stadium.”
Nebraska’s home winning streak ranks fourth nationally, and Nebraska Head Softball Coach Rhonda Revelle was on board with the idea that requires dogs be accompanied by a ticket-holding human. The dogs’ free general admission seats will be in the berms, and rest assured, game administrators already know what your next question is. And the answer is – there will be Doggie “Drop” Stations for this Bark in the Park doubleheader against the Michigan State Spartans.
“There’s no better way to enjoy the fantastic weather we’re having,” Wenstrand said. “It’s a great way to kick back and root for the Huskers while enjoying a day at the park with what I’m calling the ‘Huskers’ Best Friend’. We’ve given this promotion a lot of thought, and we really do want people to bring some bark to the park and have some fun. We’ll have watering stations and a covered area to keep dogs as comfortable as possible. We’re even having a contest for the ‘Best Dressed Dog’ at the game.”
Fans with no idea about how they might dress their dog for “Bark in the Park” day need not worry. Huskers Authentic will have special apparel available for dogs, making sure that ever doggone base is covered before we hit the dog days of summer.
Send a comment or story idea to email@example.com