A Very Victorian Idea for Baseball

by | Apr 11, 2018 | Baseball, Collegiate Summer Baseball, Marc Viquez |

Fans will have two new ways to watch Victoria HarbourCats baseball games this season with the addition of the Wilson’s Group Upper Deck Experience and Strathcona Hotel-Rooftop Party Deck, both will create a brand new experience during the summer months and enhance the ballpark experience.

The Wilson’s Group Upper Deck Experience is an upper deck of an open-top double-decker bus located on the first base side of the ballpark.The bus will fit 25 to 50 people and include a patio area around it. It is a vantage point that is not too common in many other baseball stadiums across Canada or the United States.

It has been a very well-received, unique, and very-Victoria idea,” said HarbourCats Manager Partner Jim Swanson. “It was a joint idea from myself and co-owner John Wilson, CEO of Wilson’s Transportation. “They de-commissioned some older Gray Line Sightseeing buses from downtown, which are historic to Victoria, open top, hop-on/hop-off service that is so popular with the company and tourists.”

In addition to the double-deck buses, fans will have a decked area down the third baseline to enjoy. It is large enough to support up to 100 people and is within feet of the action on the playing field. The Strathcona Hotel-Rooftop Party Deck will be designed as a casual space for mingling, socializing, and watching baseball.

Both areas will be sold primarily as a seating option for groups (25 people for busses and 50 people for party deck) but may be opened for general admission seating for games with no group bookings. The two new areas will have designated servers that can assist fans with their food and beverage choices.

“With the double-decker bus along first base and now the group deck along the third base line, fans coming to games will have two very unique vantage points from which to watch a game,” added Swanson.

The ball club also announced a five-year branding agreement with Wilson’s Group of companies to rename the ballpark Wilson’s Group Stadium and Royal Athletic Park. There will also be the addition of more tent areas and padded seating, seat cupholders, and sushi will be available at the stadium.

The HarbourCats are members of the collegiate summer West Coast League and have led the league in attendance the last four seasons ranking 14 out of 153 summer leagues across North America with a season total of 51,264 fans in 2017.

“Sales have been brisked,” added Swanson. “We have sold more than half (upper-deck buses) for our 34 games, and it has happened fast.”

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