Promo Preview: This is the end, my friend

RailRiders' 'The Office' tribute highlights season's final weekend

The RailRiders are closing out the 2018 season with an evening dedicated to the Scranton-set sitcom "The Office." (Ken Inness/MiLB.com)

By Benjamin Hill / MiLB.com | August 30, 2018 10:00 AM

Saving the best for last? 

The 2018 Minor League season wraps up over Labor Day weekend, and most teams are staging the usual array of Fan Appreciation Nights and storage closet-cleaning "Mystery" giveaways. But not the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, who are paying tribute to "The Office" on Saturday.

The RailRiders and "The Office" are a natural fit, as the long-running NBC sitcom took place in the northeastern Pennsylvania locale the team calls home. Five years ago, after the show concluded its run, the club hosted a wrap party at PNC Field that included all of Dunder Mifflin's most well-known employees (even Steve "Michael Scott" Carell, who had left the show two seasons prior to its conclusion). That event, described in an adjective-laden press release as "a fervent conclusion to a day-long homage for the wildly popular program," resulted in the RailRiders winning the Golden Bobblehead for best overall promotion at the 2013 Minor League Baseball Promotional Seminar.

The RailRiders will be giving out their own awards Saturday, as the first 2,500 fans receive a Dundie Award bobblehead for being the Very Best Fans in Baseball. This is, of course, a reference to the awards given out by Michael Scott to all of the employees in his office. The team has also solicited nominations for a series of "Dundie Community Awards," featuring categories such as Longest Engagement ("winner gets married during the game"), Jim and Pam Award ("cutest couple"), World's Best Boss and Best Beat Writer ("or beet writer if you know someone who fits that category.")

Tweet from @swbrailriders: We take @theofficenbc very seriously. Stayed tuned this week to see more promos for one of the best nights of the year, #OfficeNight! Office Night Tickets: https://t.co/ezODuoa9LlVideo by: @eautowarranty @MiLB @MiLBPromos @Cut4 @MattBarrie @espn @barstoolsports pic.twitter.com/ANK7xDXSh0

That's not the only thing the RailRiders' party planning committee has, uh, planned, as they claim that "rumors of ['The Office'] reboot has sparked our creativity." Robert Shafer, who played Bob Vance of Vance Refrigeration on the show, will be on hand to sign autographs, and an "Office Olympics" will take place throughout the evening. Events include "Flonkerton, a Pie Eating Contest and The Stickler -- all to win a yogurt lid gold medal."

If all that isn't enough, fans may want to indulge in a postgame meal at the local Chili's. Just go easy on the margaritas. 

Approaching the finish line

Looking for other promotional highlights from the season's final weekend? You came to the right -- OK, only -- place! MiLB include

Aug. 30: In the world of Minor League promos, few things are more on-brand than the haphazard celebration of offseason holidays. Case in point: The Potomac Nationals are celebrating "(Almost) Halfway to St. Patrick's Day," featuring food and drink specials as well as an in-game quest for "12 hidden leprechaun replicas." Oh, and it's also "Dating App Night." Maybe the luck of the Irish will bring luck in love.

Tweet from @PNats42: Meet your match at the ballpark on Thursday with Dating App Night! Matches will win a prize and can compete in an on-field game. Plus stop by the Flirt Zone! It will also be Ladies Night! First pitch at 7:05pm, gates open at 6pm.🎟: https://t.co/g96XLn3Rt7 pic.twitter.com/7Nj8PqkkpK

Aug. 31: The Frisco RoughRiders are celebrating the defensive prowess of backstop Jose Trevino by giving away what might be the first ever "double Gold Glove bobblehead." In the below video, real-life Trevino conducts a riveting albeit one-sided conversation with his bobbling counterpart. 

 Tweet from @RidersBaseball: ��� Baseball ��� Bobbleheads��� Fireworks Join us on Friday for our regular season finale featuring a Jose Trevino DOUBLE GOLD GLOVE bobblehead giveaway! TICKETS ������ https://t.co/fqhxQ4v2ZW pic.twitter.com/f4ZZLEyTYr

This season, the Staten Island Yankees played as the Pizza Rats during every Saturday home game. These dough-chomping rodents are making a special Friday appearance in a one-time-only "Food Fight" against the Vermont Maple Kings (usually known as the Lake Monsters). And, as an added bonus, this writer will be at the game in order to engage in a Bazooka bubble gum-blowing contest against 1975 Major League Baseball bubble-blowing champ Kurt Bevacqua. 

Tweet from @SIYanks: 🗣FOOD FIGHT!Your Staten Island Pizza Rats will be taking the field one final time this season in a Food Fight game vs. the Vermont Maple Kings @VTLakeMonsters Get your tickets NOW for a food fight for the ages! 🎟 https://t.co/xUiqnJogY4 pic.twitter.com/I0h7jAhTRu

Sept. 1: May the 4th has come and gone, yet Star Wars promos continue on until the bitter end. The Kane County Cougars host their iteration Saturday, just prior to all of us joining the dark side that is the long, cold baseball offseason.

 Tweet from @KCCougars: "I sense something. A presence I have not felt since #YourCougars last Star Wars �� Night" - Darth Vader, probably. Star Wars Night is happening on Saturday, September 1 with the @501MWG, fireworks and more! Ready are you? 🎟: https://t.co/5xzPEAmjyf pic.twitter.com/fBfsg25rsl

Sept. 3: The offseason is a whole lot of nothing. To usher it in, the Lake Elsinore Storm are offering everything. Everything as in "Everything Night," the all-promos-at-once extravaganza that serves as a counterpoint to their groundbreaking "Nothing Night" promotion. 

Tweet from @Storm_Baseball: Join us as we celebrate every theme night & promotion on our last home game of the regular season! Random prizes will be given out at the gates! pic.twitter.com/xfHr91L3i3

Benjamin Hill is a reporter for MiLB.com and writes Ben's Biz Blog. Follow Ben on Twitter This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

View More