A recent Yahoo Sports story about baseball bargains focuses heavily on Camden Yards and the Orioles’ “Birdland Stimulus Package.”
Yet Section 334, high above home plate, was humming—large groups of college-age kids, elderly couples, families with small children in Nick Markakis jerseys. And most of them had paid an almost quaint price for their seats: $8.
This is what baseball promotions look like during an economic meltdown: The one in Baltimore was called the Birdland Stimulus Package.
Despite all the talk about the platinum-card seats at Yankee Stadium, the prix-fixe menus, microbrews, martinis and dry-aged beef, the classic ballpark experience is still available for less cash than it takes to see a movie.
You just have to hunt for it.
“They say it costs, what, a hundred bucks, 150, to take your family to the game?” said David Adden, a self-employed graphic designer who snapped up Baltimore’s $8 Tuesday night seats for himself and his 7-year-old son.
“But that’s with the cotton candy and the jersey for your kid, all that. This is really all you need, this view.”
I particularly appreciate the article’s focus on the fact that it doesn’t cost much to simply watch the game. (Emphasis added in the excerpt below.)
Take Camden Yards. On just the five-minute walk from the park’s Eutaw Street entrance to the seats up behind home, you can stop to buy any of the following: An Orioles giant orange foam finger ($9), a hand-drawn caricature of yourself ($10 to $25), a Markakis bobblehead doll ($25) or a foot-high, Orioles cap-wearing garden gnome ($35, plus the untold psychological damage to your children).
All of which cost more than an actual upper-deck ticket on Stimulus Package night. And all of which have little, if anything, to do with the one thing that hasn’t changed as player salaries have swelled and the economy has soured—the simple pleasure of watching the game itself.