Wednesday, December 12, 2007

JOD to become Modern Woodmen Park

Modern Woodmen Park Unveiled -Swingbaseball.com

So the new owners managed to sell naming rights in less than a month, whereas Krause could never find anyone to pay what he apparently wanted. It could definitely have been a worse name (Lunchable Stadium?), and its nice that its a QC-based company as well.

The better news is that the new owners are planning to lower ticket prices for the upcoming season. Between dumping the unpopular name and decreasing ticket prices, hopefully they can generate enough community goodwill to start packing the stands again.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Since when was 'John O'Donnell' an unpopular name? Just wondering.

hoganj300 said...

Yeah, I don't think JOD was unpopular, just maybe the sign on the front of the stadium looked sort of cheap. I liked the name.

Anonymous said...

Not to speak for QCI, but I think he was referring to The Swing of the Quad-Cities as the unpopular name.

The new owners have said that will be changing as well.

Anonymous said...

Conservative Demo here:
Apparently the ball team owner is also the owner of the stadium and has the right to name the place whatever he chooses? Guess I'm showing my age because all along I thought that We The People owned the stadium and would have a final say in any naming of the place.

QuadCityImages said...

The previous lease with Krause specified that he could sell naming rights, so I'm sure the new lease has something along those lines as well.

And yes, I was referring to the Swing name, not John O'Donnell.

pioneer98 said...

I'm sad to see the name change, but I don't know if they could have done much better than to affiliate with Modern Woodmen.

It's sad because I've lived here most of my life, and I couldn't really tell you what MW are all about. It's a nice way to raise their profile.

What I'm most excited about is that baseball is going to be here for a long, long time.

Socialist Christian Hippie said...

Baseball for people who don't like baseball.

It used to be baseball fans went to the baseball park. Now the baseball park is all about getting people who aren't baseball fans to come.

So more and more fans leave. Then they wonder where the fans went. So they build more things to get more people who don't like baseball to come.

Why not get rid of the baseball players completely and the field and build an amusement park.

Heck, Minute Maid park in Houston has a MALL in it. You can go to a restaurant and watch the game on TV.

Boy I'm grumpy. Its just a BIG issue with me. In pandering to the rich we sell out what's great in this country.

QuadCityImages said...

Well, I like baseball quite a bit, and I love the renovated stadium. If naming it after a respected long-time community business allows them to lower the ticket prices and hopefully bring back crowds in the thousands instead of the hundreds, I feel its a good thing.

Even people who love baseball can't afford to take their family to a game every couple weeks at the prices that were offered before. I think $5 tickets should go a long way towards bringing people back to the ballpark.

Anonymous said...

SCR:

I think your anger is misplaced.

If baseball owners could keep stands full and turn a profit just keeping things simple - a few hot dogs, sodas and the game - they would do it.

Unfortunately, they HAVE to add all the bells and whistles to compete for the increasingly infantile attention spans of the average American consumer.

Anonymous said...

I think this is fantastic for the team, and I'm excited to see the doors that will open due to the additional income. It's especially great to know they should have much less difficulty paying the lease eachy ear, and we get lower prices to boot. If that isn't a win-win, I don't know what is. I actually like "The Swing" but I won't mind a change. I do find it funny that people don't like it, yet if you'll remember, THE PEOPLE voted for it to begin with if I'm not mistaken. Anyway, the stadium sponsorhip went to a local and responsible business that's heavily involved in the community. This looks like a great deal all around to me. I'd rather corporate names be left off sports, but it's just a fact of life that's really not that hard to get over. 2008 should be a great season!

Davenport Growing Paines said...

I think there is a reason to name places, buildings, landmarks, etc. after someone, and that is to preserve the memory of their contribution to the area. I am pretty ignorant to the contributions of John O'Donnell to Davenport, but that is my own fault for not researching him more. I am pleased that the new owner, as well as Modern Woodmen, have made statements to the fact that they will educate and preserve the memory of Mr. O'Donnell. This, to me, is more important than the name of a facility. Yeah, it's named after him, but I know nothing about him. At least now, it appears we may hear more about him and his contributions. Now that being said, I hope they stick to their statement and someone holds them to it.

Matt said...

i just wish i could root for a home team that was still affiliated with the cubs, not the cards. (hangs head low and kicks some dirt).

Anonymous said...

According to wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_O'Donnell_Stadium):

"In 1971 the stadium was renamed from Municipal Stadium to John O'Donnell Stadium in honor of the longtime sports editor of the Davenport Times-Democrat, shortly following his death."

Moe @ http://www.iowavoice.com said...

Wow. He dumped the crappy name (The Swing), sold naming rights to a local company (Modern Woodmen), and is lowering ticket prices in order to get more fans to the game.

Hmmm. Sounds like we finally have a businessman owning the team!

Moe @ http://www.iowavoice.com said...

To address a previous concern: I'm not sure how lowering ticket prices somehow panders to the rich... Seems to me they are pandering to the poor, if anybody.

Then again, I'm not a socialist, either.

Socialist Christian Hippie said...

Well, there was the day, for many years, that tickets were given away over at the stadium.

Not that I expect it to continue as such.

However, taxpayer dollars went to renovate the stadium and the first thing they did when the stadium was rennovated was to raise ticket prices and concession prices.

Essentially, taxing the poor/middle class twice. If they decide to use the ammenity that they paid for.

The citizens take a part of the baseball club's risk, and get no reward.

Should the ownership go bankrupt tomorrow, there is no remedy for the citizen.

Should the team become amazingly successful...there is no gain for the citizen.

At least the owner of the team can sit in his luxury suite. The stadium owners cannot. Though their dollars pay for it.

Essentially, the poor are subsidizing the prices the rich pay to sit in luxury boxes.

Anonymous said...

Can I just say I'm so glad Krause is no longer the owner. To put it nicely he was a jerk. The new guys wouldn't have to do much to look better.

pioneer98 said...

schqc: You say that the poor subsidize the rich about almost everything the government does. It sounds good, but I want to see the data. Also, you are implying that they are stupid or naive enough that they don't recognize that this is being "done" to them. I think you underestimate them.

The stadium was built in 1931, probably by people way poorer than today's standard of poor. Even all the way back then they recognized that there are some things that have value that can't be measured on paper.

Anonymous said...

Conservative Demo here:
Recreation makes for petty news, cop-toys make for expensive news.

Am I the only one to wonder why a theoretically "money-saving" phancy dispatch system has to cost us $5.30/thousand?

Anonymous said...

Remember the taxpayers took the hit (new lease)in order to lower the prices. Keith

Anonymous said...

Since Davenport Growing Paines is a city staff member does that mean they are using city equipment and city time to blog?

Anonymous said...

Keith:

Is there nothing but negatives in your life.

Don't you think the funds raised by Modern woodmen's naming rights contract had something to do with establishing ticket prices? And, marketing to introduce the new team?

Renegotiating the lease reflects the economics of the market place, not a give-away. It's better to have a tenant who can afford the lease than a higher lease with no tenant. The tax payers were saved money by renegotiating.

Anonymous said...

Craig,
**************************.

Anonymous said...

2:38:

May I salute you? My finger is at ready.

Anonymous said...

It's going to take alot more than a name change to pack JOD this summer. The QC attendance has been near the bottom (only Clinton, Burlington, and some other small town had less) for quite awhile. Basically, people here will have to stop whining about how there's nothing to do and get off their butts. I'm not a baseball fan, but I try to make it out to at least one game per year simply to show moral support for the franchise. The Quad Cities benefits from having minor league sports here as an entertainment option. Why do so many people in this area curse the darkness instead of lighting a candle??? I don't get it. The Flames and the Steamwheelers are in critical condition but nobody here seems to give a crap. We lost the Thunder in 2001 and the prospects for regaining AAA-level professional basketball in the QC are non-existant. Does this area really want to be another Waterloo or Cedar Rapids where entertainment options are much more limited?

QuadCityImages said...

I don't think the team's name change is going to make THE difference, but I think it will make A difference. There are people who supposedly refused to go to a Swing game, who should come back to the River Bandits now.

What I think will make another, bigger difference is the ticket prices. When it costs $7 minimum per ticket, a family of 4 is $28 just to get in the door. Or they could buy a new DVD and sit around the TV for $10. When free or discounted tickets are given away, the place is much, much fuller. Hopefully the availability of $5 tickets will make a night at the ballpark a feasible family entertainment option again.

Anonymous said...

Conservative Demo here:
Let's not forget that the last owner of the team, a man who seemed to go out of his way to be an a_hole, went so far to charge a parking fee in a lot owned AND OPERATED by We-The_people. When he got caught on it he whined to the Council and they allowed it after-the-fact.

Anybody here too dense to consider that the low turnout might have had something to do with a bad taste in the public-mouth based on the owner's personality?

QuadCityImages said...

Oh, definitely. The last 2 owners, actually. The reason why Krause changed the name in the first place was to hopefully disassociate the baseball team with the scandals and problems caused by Holtzman. It wasn't the "River Bandits" fault though, so changing to the Swing didn't help anything.

Changing back to a name people like and lowering ticket prices seem like better methods of "starting fresh" after a bad owner.