Results tagged ‘ Weather Day ’
Working in marketing, I often get asked what our target demographic is…. but that’s not really an easy question because people of all ages truly love baseball and the reasons why fans come out to Miller Park (beyond the team on the field, of course) are endless (think: field trips, birthday celebrations, family reunions, company outings, client meetings, etc.).
Take today for example, I went from watching our annual Weather Day event where we hosted thousands of children for a pregame meteorology lesson from the TMJ4 Storm Team 4 meteorologists to sitting down with Earl Henry, a delightful gentleman who was here to celebrate his 99th birthday.
Earl’s granddaughter, Jill Finlayson, had contacted me earlier this month and told me about all of the things she was doing to make Earl’s 99th birthday a special one. Since he’s a Milwaukee native and a lifelong Brewers fan, bringing Earl out to Miller Park was right at the top of her list. Jill also made sure Earl arrived in style, in a GoRiteway limo.
Earl’s actual birthday was last Thursday, April 11 (which just happens to be the same birthdate as my dad), but today was the best day for them to come out and take in a game on this homestand.
Little did they know just how fitting it actually was.
You see, Earl’s career was dedicated to education and what better day for him to choose to come out (unbeknownst to him) than Weather Day, one of our biggest educational events.
Earl earned a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the Milwaukee State Teachers College (MSTC). In 1937, he taught at Milwaukee’s Garden Homes School and later, the Boys’ Technical High School (another odd coincidence–so did my own grandfather. I wasn’t able to find out if they had crossed paths, but there was a good chance they may have.) before becoming vice-principal at Thirty-seventh Street School in 1947.
In 1954, Earl received his first principalship at Eugene Field School; in 1959, he became principal of Franklin School on the north side; and in 1967, he became the first principal of Stuart School, where he continued for 12 years until his retirement in 1979.
Earl’s wife Kay was also a dedicated kindergarten teacher in Milwaukee for her career and together, they created the Earl & Kathryn Henry Scholarship Fund at UW-Milwaukee. Now in it’s 10th year, the scholarship aims to benefit undergraduate students enrolled in UW-Milwaukee’s School of Education who plan to become elementary school teachers or school administrators, preferably in the Milwaukee Public School System.
I had the pleasure of speaking with Earl, who talked about his career and former students. He also reminisced about not only his days following the Milwaukee Braves and Brewers at County Stadium, but going back to the Borchert Field days of the minor league American Association Brewers, when he was a good friend of announcer Russ Winnie.
The American Association Milwaukee Brewers played for 50 years, from 1902-1952; they won their first American Association championship in 1913 and repeated the next year. All told the American Association Brewers won eight pennants in their fifty-one seasons.
This year, we’re honoring the 100th anniversary American Association Brewers on May 5. [Click for a photo of the Corey Hart bobblehead.]
For perspective, Earl just missed being born for that first championship, but he was there for their second, although he was just a baby.
It’s amazing to think about and what’s even more amazing is that Earl is still as spry as ever. He needs no help getting to his seat, his memory is sharp as a whip and boy, is he funny!
“I read in the paper that one of the Sausages was stolen,” Earl told me.
“Yes,” I confirmed. “We are glad he’s back.”
“I suppose that’s not the wurst thing that could happen,” Earl said, as he started to chuckle.
Yes, a wonderful family, a love of baseball and a great sense of humor–things that will get you far in life.
We wish Earl a very happy 99th birthday–and many more. We’re glad he could come out to celebrate with us today, where he could feel at home, especially surrounded by all of the teachers and children.
If you would like to donate to the Earl & Kathryn Henry Scholarship Fund, please click here. You can also join in wishing Earl a Happy 99th Birthday on the UW-Milwaukee School of Education’s Facebook Page.
Birthdays. Retirements. Bachelor/bachelorette parties. Company outings. Family reunions. Youth organizations, day camp and school field trips. Sorority/fraternity outings. Team celebrations. Church group outings. Club gatherings.
Whatever the occasion, Miller Park is the perfect place for your group outing and Brewers Director of Group Sales, Chris Barlow, and his staff are there to ensure that all of the details are handled. Your group just has to show up, enjoy the game and have fun!
As a Wisconsin native who grew up in Oconomowoc and Wauwatosa, Chris has always been a Brewers fan.
“When I was a little kid, if you had told me that when I was a grownup, I would be working for the Brewers for a really good chunk of my life, I would have said I will take it, I wouldn’t have even asked how much it paid,” Chris said.
In fact, Chris remembers his first Brewers game in 1972 when the Crew faced the Red Sox with Luis Tiant on the mound, and his first time at Opening Day in 1980 when Chris’ favorite player at the time, Sixto Lezcano, hit a walk-off grand slam in the ninth to win the game.
Those cherished times spent at County Stadium made Chris realize that he wanted to work in sports in some capacity. A UW-Eau Claire graduate with a degree in broadcast journalism, Chris spent his college years working at WKOW in La Crosse, producing a nightly sports cable TV show, writing for the Eau Claire Leader Telegram and the Spectator.
After graduation and a brief stint working as a reporter for Community Newspapers, Chris took a job with the Brewers as a Telephone Sales Representative (TSR).
Then, when Chris’ boss at the time left to take a position in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres, he brought Chris along with him. There, Chris was responsible for helping create a sales force. While Chris enjoyed his time with the Sabres, he still felt that pull to return to his hometown team.
“When they put the shovel in the ground for Miller Park, I called [now VP-Consumer Marketing] Jim Bathey and said,’ Jim I want to come home!”
Jim offered Chris a job and he came back to the Crew in 1997. He’s been working here ever since.
“My original thought, way back when I was a TSR, was that I would get my foot in the door and then move into broadcasting or media relations, but all these years later, here I am, in Group Sales,” Chris said.
But Chris is definitely not unhappy with how his career has panned out. “I found out I was pretty good at it and that I enjoyed it,” he said.
“I love working at Miller Park and it still gives me goose bumps some days when I drive up,” he said.
While Chris’ career has evolved over the years, his current responsibilities include overseeing all of Group Sales, which includes group outings, the All-Inclusive Areas, the party suites and the tailgate facilities.
Chris’ staff includes Maggie Aliota, Group Event Coordinator and Jake Mentch, Group Account Executive, and the three of them are there to assist fans with planning their group outings every step of the way.
“Any group, any size, any event, any budget, and, with our retractable roof, any weather—we’ve got you covered,” Chris said.
And they are always coming up with new ideas to enhance the fan experience.
New for 2011, along with our Bonus Games, Chris and his staff have added Value Games and Super Bonus games, so fans have additional opportunities to save even more. This means that we now offer groups up to 83% savings to over half of our home games. Plus, your group can catch some of the hottest games against the rival Cubs, Cardinals and Twins at non-Marquee prices, exclusively for groups, saving up to 40% off individual ticket prices for select games.
Also new this season, fans have opportunity to purchase individual tickets in some of Miller Park’s All-Inclusive Areas for select dates at a special savings. As the name suggests, these areas are just that—all-inclusive. You get your game ticket, plus premium food and beverage options from your choice of several unique vantage points around the ballpark, such as the AirTran Airways Landing Zone, Gehl Club, Harley-Davidson Deck and Dew Deck. In the past, access to these areas has been limited to those purchasing in large groups, but now, the Group Sales Department is giving fans the chance to bring out smaller groups to sample the area.
Of the All-Inclusive Areas, Chris’ favorite is the Gehl Club, an upscale venue located on the PNC Club Level, down the left-field line.
“It is a great place to view a game from. You might not think that if you just looked at a stadium map, but when you go stand in there, it is stunning. I am a little biased but I think it is one of the best places to watch a game from anywhere in baseball and the food is excellent, too,” Chris said.
Group Cap Days are another new initiative that has added value to the group experience in the last two years. Groups that purchase 25 or more group tickets in select areas on certain dates throughout the season will receive a unique Brewers adjustable cap for everyone in the group. The 2011 Cap Days are May 20, July 8, July 29, August 12, September 9 and September 23.
Another Group Sales offering that fans may not be aware of is the Corporate Savings Program (CSP). Personally, I think it is the best kept secret around here…well, next to the recipe for Secret Stadium Sauce! Basically, all it takes is one main contact at a company or organization to sign up for the program. The Group Sales staff will then send that individual a link to special ticket offers, exclusive to CSP members. The contact only has to post and promote the information and then it allows others within the organization to buy the tickets directly online; there is no money to collect, there are no minimums to meet, and the Group Sales staff handles the rest! It’s a great, no-cost perk for companies to be able to offer to employees.
Chris’ staff does such a great job day in and day out that they have countless repeat customers who always plan on hosting their annual Brewers outing at Miller Park. Although 25 is the magic number to be considered as a group here, many of those repeat customers are very large groups, like sometimes in excess of 10,000 people large!
For example, we have Little League Night each year and there is a pre-game parade of over 10,000 Little Leaguers. This year’s event falls on Monday, June 20.
“That whole night is very special to me because of the kids involved and being able to see their faces light up as the walk around the warning track with their coaches. It is an incredible feeling. The folks that organize that event are people who truly only care about organizing a fun baseball activity for kids. It is very refreshing,” Chris said.
Other large group nights include Weather Day (April 7), Singles Night (April 25)), Military Appreciation Day (this Sunday, May 15), Racine Day (May 22), Stitch N’ Pitch Night (June 21) , La Crosse Day (June 22) and many more!
Like I said before, whatever the occasion, if you want to give your event a little zing, boom, tararrel, you’ll want to make sure your gang’s all here!
For more information on Group Outings at Miller Park, vist brewers.com/grouptickets or call (414) 902-GRPS (4777).