River Bandits call on fans again

By Quad Cities River Bandits | January 8, 2009 12:30 PM

In keeping with River Bandits tradition, the team is once again reaching out to fans for their feedback.

On Thursday, the River Bandits and Modern Woodmen Bank announced the launch of a new fan-voting initiative. The "Name the Promotion Contest" is designed for fans to come up with a great promotion for the River Bandits during the 2009 season. There are no limits to the contest -- if you can dream it up, the River Bandits want to hear about it!

"We have had great success whenever we have asked for our fans' input, so we thought it would be a great idea to do it again," said team owner Dave Heller. "They have already voted on the name of the team, the name of the mascot and a major ballpark improvement -- all of which have helped us. Moreover, we've been consistently impressed by the wide variety of unique and innovative ideas that our fans submit to our office. We are very much looking forward to seeing the great ideas that the best baseball fans in the world will inevitably send our way."

The River Bandits are excited to welcome a large number of wide-ranging ideas and have set no restrictions to ensure that fans can let their creative juices flow freely. Promotional ideas could cover a single game through a theme night or giveaway, take place during a half-inning break with a game or contest or unfold over the course of the entire season. The promotion could revolve around the baseball being played on the field or it could involve concessions or ticketing. The possibilities are endless.

The first phase of the contest begins on Friday. Fans have the opportunity to submit their suggestion for next season's great promotion online by the River Bandits' website at www.RiverBandits.com. The open suggestion phase of the contest will last until Jan. 30. After Modern Woodmen Bank and the River Bandits narrow down the suggestions to a list of finalists, the second phase of the contest will begin on Feb. 2 and allow fans to vote on the best promotional ideas through Feb. 13.

In addition to publicly receiving credit for presenting the promotion that is ultimately selected as the winner, the fan with the best idea will be rewarded with four tickets to the game in which it is featured as well as the opportunity to throw out the first pitch beforehand. If the winning idea turns out to be a multi-game or season-long promotion, one appropriate game will be selected. The winner will also receive a River Bandits prize pack full of team merchandise and other great items.

"There were many wonderful ideas from fans during the Name the Improvement Contest," said Steve Ollenburg, President and CEO of Modern Woodmen Bank. "Modern Woodmen Bank is thrilled to be a part of the newest contest to enhance the game experience at Modern Woodmen Park for the community."

The club first asked for fans to contribute their input late in the 2007 season, when the "Your Team, Your Name" contest overwhelmingly resulted in the decision to revert the team's moniker back to the River Bandits. In the spring of 2008 a fan vote named the new River Bandits mascot, Rascal, and earlier this offseason the "You Pick the Improvement" contest resulted in a ballpark enhancement project to add seat backs to the bleacher section. As the team continues planning for next season, it should come as no surprise that they are once again turning to the fans of the Quad Cities to make a decision that will have a significant impact on the 2009 campaign.

"Two things that are extremely important to our organization are maintaining a high level of entertainment and listening to our fans," said River Bandits Vice President and General Manager Kirk Goodman. "This contest allows us to do both. When we have brainstorming sessions in our office to come up with new and different promotional ideas each season, we always end up with great ideas that we did not necessarily expect. I am confident that this contest will yield the same type of ideas that are full of creativity and unique in nature."

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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