by Rebecca Picard
In the town of Sonoma, California, it’s difficult to find fun things to do aside from wine tasting. Now, with the new addition of the Sonoma Stompers professional baseball club that began last year, locals now have something to look forward to. Both residents and tourists can look no further than a game at Arnold Field in Sonoma.
Assistant general manager, Sean Boisson says that the one word to describe the Stompers is “hometown”. Since the beginning of the league, the Sonoma Stompers have created a community with more fun and excitement for both baseball fans and non-baseball fans alike. The Stompers not only bring an exciting game to the town of Sonoma, but also a fun social environment.
The Sonoma Stompers are going strong and have big plans for the upcoming season. Immediately after the end of the season last year, staff and players didn’t miss a beat preparing for report date which is scheduled for May 22.
“Our players live at home during the off season. Southern California, back east, Japan, the Dominican Republic and Canada--all getting ready on their own until report date.” Boisson adds, “As long as they show up in baseball shape (different than regular person in shape) then we’re happy.”
“Our front office staff works tirelessly in the off season selling sponsorships, finding host families, creating fun promotions among many other things.” He recognizes that the Stompers staff does a ton of crucial work that most people don't think about.
“Rawhide, our mascot, is on 'vacation' in Canada getting dry-cleaned and repaired for the upcoming season. We have a lot of fun getting ready for the season but it’s all business. In baseball the off season is spent preparing for the season, that’s where all the heavy lifting occurs, in season it’s simply execution.”
Fans have a lot to look forward to this year and Boisson has given more insight on the fun things that they are bringing to the field. The promotions include side burn giveaways for 80’s night and bringing in Jose Canseco to play for the team. These are just a few of the great things that will be happening in 2015. Perhaps one of the greatest things fans can look forward to is the affordable tickets that start at $4 and a variety of great food, wine and beer selections.
“The Stompers are under new local ownership that is putting a large emphasis on improving the fan experience. Seating will be more comfortable, our beer garden is getting an amazing facelift and the chain link behind home plate is being replaced with netting to create a better view of the game from the grandstand”
Boisson hopes to double the attendance from last year and make a fun affordable place for families and young people to enjoy. The new emphasis on the fan experience should help him achieve this goal.
“As an organization, we hope to put a competitive team on the field, the more competitive we are the better we will do in attendance,” Boisson said. “Becoming the place to be in Sonoma during the summer would be amazing. We’ve said this time and time again, we want people to have such an amazing time at the game that when they get home they ask each other
'Who won the game?'”.
He continued by saying, “I love having friends and family out to ball games and being proud of what I was able to help create, that’s a great feeling.”
The first hometown game is scheduled for June 1 at 6:05pm.