Sports & Recreation
BANDITS BRING THE BEST FOR 2014 PROMOTIONS PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Friday, 21 March 2014 13:46
Schedule bursting with giveaways, charity events, theme nights, and celebrating the Quad Cities
DAVENPORT, Iowa (March 18, 2014) – The combination of playing in the Best Minor League Ballpark in America, being an affiliate of the Houston Astros, who possess the No. 1-rated minor league farm system, and defending the Midwest League Championship is just the beginning for the Quad Cities River Bandits this season. After earning multiple national promotional awards, the club is amplifying its most popular gameday giveaways, events, themes and entertainment while adding more unique shows to fill its 2014 promotional schedule.
Beginning with the bobblehead giveaways and weekly promotions announced earlier this month, the River Bandits released the rest of their full promotional slate at a press conference Tuesday in the Bandits Business Center powered by Bradfield's at Modern Woodmen Park. Highlighting the schedule are more than two dozen free giveaways, including eight “bobble” items, and a dozen fireworks nights.
“For every day and night that we open the gates of Modern Woodmen Park, our goal is to give our guests of all ages a great experience, great value and lasting memories. To do so, we have an incredible lineup of family-friendly fun this season,” said team owner Dave Heller. “With more than two dozen giveaways, a dozen fireworks nights, more charitable events, new theme nights and numerous celebrations of what makes the Quad Cities unique and special, no one will want to miss the excitement that every game will offer this season!”
Below are the highlights of the promotions announced on Tuesday:
Return of the Champions: On Opening Day, Thursday, April 3, the River Bandits will take the field for the first time since winning the 2013 Midwest League Championship, which was the team's second in three years and sixth in Quad Cities franchise history. When the Modern Woodmen Park gates open at 5:30 p.m., the first 1,000 fans will receive a championship pennant courtesy of Mediacom. On Opening Day and Friday, April 4, the first 2,500 fans to each game will also receive free 2014 magnet schedules – and one lucky fan will win a brand new refrigerator, because what good is a magnet schedule if you have no place to put it?
Award-Winning Charity Efforts: The River Bandits were the first U.S. professional sports team to auction photo jerseys for local cancer charities in 2012, and the 2013 Autism Awareness Photo Jersey Auction earned a Golden Bobblehead Award for the Best Charity Promotion in all of Minor League Baseball. The third annual photo jersey auction will take place on Autism Awareness Night presented by KWQC, Friday, Aug. 8. Fans can again purchase small squares in the River Bandits players' jersey numbers to feature a photograph of themselves, a family member or friend, or in honor of a loved one affected by autism. After the game, the jerseys will be auctioned off, with all the proceeds benefitting the Quad Cities Autism Center. A limited number of squares are available for purchase at $25 each, with all of the money raised going to the Quad Cities Autism Center. More information is available by calling (563) 324-3000.
The River Bandits will continue another successful charity event with the second annual Bandits Race to Home 5K and Kids Fun Run presented by Palmer Chiropractic Clinics on Saturday, April 12, at 8 a.m. Registration is required by April 10 at riverbandits.com/5K. All proceeds from the race benefit the Bandit Scholars Program, which will award its two annual college scholarships for a full first year of tuition to two Quad Cities-area students at the River Bandits game Sunday, June 15. In the same week, the charity promotional lineup will expand for three new events. A new pink jersey auction will highlight Breast Cancer Awareness Night presented by Genesis Health Systems and the Quad-City Times on Friday, June 13. Then Pack the Truck Night benefiting the River Bend Food Bank will be Thursday, June 19. Finally, the Quad Cities Area McDonald's will present Ronald McDonald House Charities Awareness Night on Friday, June 20.
Giveaways Galore & Plentiful Prizes: More than two dozen free giveaways are on the promotional schedule for the 2014 season, including eight “bobble” items announced earlier this month. The new giveaways include the Camo Drawstring Backpack Giveaway presented by Western Illinois University (Thursday, May 1), the Sport Bottle Giveaway presented by Total Turf & Landscape (Friday, May 9), the Winter Blanket Giveaway presented by the Clarion Hotel (Saturday, May 10), the Pint Glass Giveaway on Agriculture Night presented by Illinois Farm Bureau (Friday, July 18), and the Team Photo Giveaway presented by Burlington Trailways (Wednesday, July 30). Returning for multiple nights are the Modern Woodmen Hat Giveaways (Thursday, June 19; Thursday, July 17; and Thursday, Aug. 28) and Hy-Vee Tote Bag Giveaways (Sunday, July 6, and Sunday, Aug. 10). The Bandits are also stepping up the big-ticket prize items fans can win at games this season. Led by the fifth annual award-winning Reynolds Ford Used Car Giveaway (Thursday, July 10), the schedule also brings back the McGivern's Mega Jewelry Giveaway (Wednesday, July 9), the Mega Bicycle Giveaway (Sunday, June 8), Cardinals Fantacular Giveaway (Sunday, June 9), and a bigger-than-ever Flat Screen Family Sunday (Aug. 10), as well as the all-new Budweiser Mega Mini Fridge Giveaway (Sunday, June 15).
Celebrating the Community: The people of the Quad Cities region deserve more than just a single night or series for appreciation. So beginning with an absolutely free baseball game for everyone (that's right, no admission price!) on Quad Cities Community Appreciation Night on Tuesday, April 15, the River Bandits are packing the season with recognition and celebration of many unique contributors to the Quad Cities community. There will be two nights to honor service men and women – AUSA Military Appreciation Night (Friday, May 9) and the fourth annual Camo Jersey Auction presented by the Iowa Army National Guard (Friday, May 23). Other tributes and celebrations include College Night presented by Western Illinois University (Thursday, May 1), Faith & Fellowship Night presented by Chick-fil-A and Moody Radio (Sunday, June 22), Agriculture Night presented by the Illinois Farm Bureau (Friday, July 18) and Global Cultural Night presented by Tyson Fresh Meats (Friday, Aug. 15). There will also be Irish Heritage and Go Green Night (Wednesday, May 7), Ladies Night (Thursday, May 29), the Businessman Special with a 1 p.m. Monday game (July 21), and Badges and Ladders Night (Saturday, Aug. 9). It all concludes with a whopping Fan Appreciation Night at the final regular season home game on Friday, Aug. 29.
Cool for the Kids: The River Bandits have big plans for just the kids, too. Those begin with the annual pregame Nintendo Wii-ster Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 19, the night before Easter. That night will also kick off recognition of the 2014 Book Buddies reading program graduates, whom the River Bandits will also host at three 11 a.m. Tuesday home games (April 29, May 6, May 20), as well as Friday, May 9. On back-to-back nights, Gander Mountain will present Boy Scout Night (Friday, June 20) and Girl Scout Night (Saturday, June 21). There is also Little League Day (Sunday, June 8) and Camp Day (Monday, July 21), as well as the award-winning annual Mega Candy Drop following the game on Sunday, July 20. The best way for the kids to “have it all” at the ballpark is with the River Bandits Kids Club. For a $30 package, members get free admission to every regular season home game, a membership card and T-shirt, a 10 percent discount on team store merchandise, and much more, including the chance to participate in Sunday postgame Kids Club events, which are planned for April 6, June 8, and Aug. 17.
Happy Holidays: Modern Woodmen Park is the place to host not only baseball, but so many holidays for families in the Quad Cities as well. This season the River Bandits will put their style on celebrations of Cinco de Mayo presented by the Quad-City Times (Monday, May 5), a car show for the 50th anniversary of the Ford Mustang (Monday, May 19), Mother's Day (Saturday, May 10), Father's Day with catch in the outfield (Sunday, June 15), mascot Rascal the River Bandit's Birthday Bash (Wednesday, July 9), and Halloween (Sunday, July 6) and Christmas in July (Saturday, July 19). And while the team is on the road Thursday, July 3, Modern Woodmen Park will still be open with free admission to give the Quad Cities community the best view of the annual Red, White & Boom Fireworks. Plus, after their game Friday, July 4, the River Bandits will have Fourth of July Fireworks presented by Smart Toyota of the Quad Cities, WLLR and WQAD.
Entertainment & Special Themes: The River Bandits put on a new show for every game, and this season will include the most popular annual theme nights and add a few fresh ones. The annual Pro Wrestling Night (Thursday, July 31) will feature an appearance by WWE Hall of Famer “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. The famous Russian Bar Trio presented by the Dispatch-Argus will perform on Saturday, June 14, when fans will also see the annual Vintage Baseball game before the River Bandits home contest. The River Bandits will again have Guaranteed Win Night (Wednesday, April 16), when fans in attendance will see a River Bandits victory or receive a ticket to the next Wednesday home game on April 30. Ticket prices will correspond to gas prices for the second annual Petrolpalooza Night presented by BP (Friday, May 30). Other themes to set the ambience include Hunger Games Night presented by Epix (Monday, June 9), Legends of Rock (Wednesday, April 16), Superhero (Wednesday, April 30), Survivor (Wednesday, May 21), Date Night Out (Thursday, May 22), Game Show (Wednesday, May 28), Disco Night with '70s pricing on food and beer (Tuesday, July 8), Jimmy Buffett Night (Wednesday, July 9), Star Wars (Wednesday, July 30), Ninja Turtles (Wednesday, Aug. 6) and Pirates & Princesses (Sunday, Aug. 17).
“We are delighted to bring back so many of our most popular promotions – bobbleheads, jersey auctions, great giveaways, daily deals, themes and celebrations – and build upon them with new experiences and opportunities to have fun at the ballpark this season," said River Bandits General Manager Andrew Chesser. “We cannot wait to welcome fans in the Quad Cities back to the Best Minor League Ballpark and give them an amazing show and outstanding hospitality that will create special memories at every game this season.”
The complete 2014 promotional schedule is available at www.riverbandits.com. Ticket packages are available by calling (563) 324-3000.
UP NEXT: Opening Day is April 3, so lock in your seats now to see the defending Midwest League Champions in 2014! To order any of the ticket plans - with new lower prices - call the River Bandits box office at 563-324-3000 or visit www.riverbandits.com to download the season ticket order form. Season ticket and mini-plan packages start at just seven games and begin at less than $40. Call a River Bandits account representative today to choose your seats and get the details of our various mini-plan packages.
ABOUT THE BANDITS: Having just been named Ballpark Digest's winner of Best Ballpark Improvement in America under $1 million, the River Bandits ownership is making one of the biggest improvements to Modern Woodmen Park since the ballpark was first built back in 1931! A new Ferris wheel, standing 110 feet over the playing field, is opening this spring, along with a carousel, a new ride called a "Drop and Twist," an expanded 300-foot long zip line, and many other new games and attractions. In 2013, the team unveiled a new 220-foot long dual zip line, a rock climbing wall, and a number of new bounce houses. The team's major league affiliate, the Houston Astros, just saw all six of its affiliates reach the playoffs - the first time in a decade any MLB team can claim such success. The River Bandits were one of three affiliates to reach the championship round and one of two to win their league championship.

 
Iowa State Fair Parade Applications Available Now PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Lori Chappell   
Friday, 21 March 2014 12:07

DES MOINES, IA (03/17/2014)(readMedia)-- The Iowa State Fair invites all community and youth groups, special interest clubs and businesses to join the fun and enter the State Fair Parade, Iowa's largest parade and the kick-off to the Fair. The parade is set for Wednesday, August 6. The "Amazingly Amusing" 2014 Iowa State Fair runs August 7-17.

Applications are available at www.iowastatefair.org/fair-attractions/parade or by contacting Tonya Cook at 515/262-3111 ext. 215 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . There is a $25 fee for each parade entry. Entries postmarked later than July 1 must include a $15 late fee. No entries will be accepted after July 15.

Entries will be judged and winners will receive plaques in each of the following categories: best use of Fair theme, best specialty group, most creative/original, Governor's Cup (best overall marching band), marching band (by class), best performance, best horses and best drum line.

The parade will begin at 6:15 p.m. in downtown Des Moines. Spectators will be able to watch an estimated 200 floats, animals, vehicles, novelty and performing units. Staging will take place at the State Capitol Complex. Parade entrants will then travel west on Grand Avenue to 13th Street. Dispersion will take place between 13th and 18th Streets.

Highlights of the gala event will be re-broadcast on parade night throughout central Iowa on KDSM FOX 17 beginning at 10 p.m. To be considered for television coverage, the description information on the application must be completed and returned. Due to the length of the parade, it is not possible for all entries to be televised.

"Nothing Compares" to the 2014 Iowa State Fair, August 7-17. The Fairgrounds are located at East 30th and East University Avenue, just 10 minutes east of downtown Des Moines. For more information, call 800/545-FAIR or visit www.iowastatefair.org.

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Governor Quinn Announces Kerry Wood Cubs Field Project to Move Forward PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Dave Blanchette   
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 08:46

State’s Investment Will Clean Up Site to Create New Public Sports Fields and Green Space for Future Generations

CHICAGO — Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $2 million state investment to clean up land to allow Kerry Wood Cubs Field to move forward. The project was halted nearly a year ago when environmental contaminants were discovered. The cleanup will allow work to continue on the seven-acre site that will be utilized by students throughout Chicago and include baseball, soccer and other sports fields, green space and seating for more than 1,000 people. The move is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to ensure a clean and healthy environment for future generations.

“Kerry Wood helped the Cubs make many comebacks during his storied career, and today we are helping him make one more,” Governor Quinn said. “This investment will kick-start this important project to turn an old industrial site into a state-of-the-art sports center for youth and families throughout the city.”

“I’m grateful to Governor Quinn and the state of Illinois for their support in providing a safe environment for Chicago's kids,” Wood said. “Kerry Wood Cubs Field will be a special place for our community for years to come. Having been drafted out of high school, I know the importance of having a place to play. Keeping baseball alive in our city is something that is close to my heart. I’m excited for our kids to play under the lights and start their own dreams. Anything is possible.”

“I'd like to thank Governor Quinn for helping to ensure Kerry Wood Cubs Field will become a reality for youth and families across Chicago," Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts said. "This is a testament to the collective power of Illinois' strong public, private and individual efforts to improve the quality of life in neighborhoods and communities."

“This is a great example of cooperation between the state, the city and the Cubs that allows us to complete Kerry Wood Cubs Field and build an amateur sports complex all Chicagoans will be proud to use,” U.S. Representative Mike Quigley said. “It’s an honor to be a part of this effort to give our community access to a resource that I know will create a tremendous home field advantage.”

“After hearing from Lane Tech parents frustrated with delays, I’m pleased to have worked with the Governor Pat Quinn and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency to clean up and revive this space for the community to enjoy,” Illinois Senate President John Cullerton said.

"This wonderful addition to our community will benefit all who live in this neighborhood," State Representative Ann Williams said. "Thank you to Governor Quinn and the Chicago Cubs for their efforts to make this dream a reality."

"Kerry Wood’s contributions on the field have been eclipsed only by his contributions to Chicago and our children, and this field is one more landmark to his legacy,” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said. “I want to thank Kerry and the Governor for their efforts to move this project forward and help ensure that every child in the city has access to a world-class park.”

“I am grateful for Governor Quinn’s leadership and his steadfast commitment to public schools, parks and the community at-large,” Alderman Ameya Pawar (47th) said. “As a result of his commitment, the long-standing vision for Clark Park will soon become a reality. In under just three years, he’s directed over $12 million in state funds to parks and schools in the 47th ward. I am thankful to have such a great partner.”

Kerry Wood Cubs Field will be built on a property located at 3457 N. Rockwell St., which is contaminated from its former use as a brick yard. The state’s investment, through the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA), will fund the removal of contaminated soil, followed by site grading and leveling. The contamination is limited to the site and there are no safety issues for the surrounding area.

“This project is a great example of the work we do every day to improve Illinois communities by cleaning up contaminated sites to benefit residents and young people,” IEPA Director Lisa Bonnett said.

Once complete, Kerry Wood Cubs Field will be run by the Chicago Park District. It will serve nearby Lane Tech High School and other public high schools throughout the city, and be available to recreational leagues and the general public.

The field will meet the regulations of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA), making it eligible to host state baseball playoffs. Currently many students who play baseball at Chicago high schools have to travel out of the city to play on fields that meet IHSA regulations.

The construction of the $5 million project is supported by contributions from the Cubs, Chicago Cubs Charities, the Wood Family Foundation, the City of Chicago, the Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Schools and Turner Construction.

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MALLARD TRIO NAMED CHL AWARD FINALISTS PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Brian Lavelle   
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 08:40
Rimmer Nominated for Most Outstanding Goaltender, Frazee for Rookie of the Year, Rioux for Most Outsanding Defenseman


MOLINE, Ill. (March 13, 2014) – The Quad City Mallards’ Ty Rimmer has been named one of five finalists for the Central Hockey League Most Outstanding Goaltender award while the Mallards’ Thomas Frazee has been named a finalist for the CHL’s Rookie of the Year award and Quad City’s Nicholas Rioux has been selected as a finalist for the league’s Most Outstanding Defenseman honor, the Mallards announced today in conjunction with the CHL.

Rimmer, a 21-year old rookie, has gone 17-11-4 in 34 games this season and is tied for third in the league in shutouts (3), ranks sixth in goals against average (2.76) and save percentage (.910) and ranks seventh in wins.  The 6’ 1”, 170-pound Edmonton native is in the midst of a four game winning streak and has gone 7-1-0 in his last ten games.

Rimmer played three American Hockey League games for the Oklahoma City Barons in December, going 1-0-1 with a 2.65 goals against average and a .930 save percentage during his AHL call-up.  Rimmer was also named CHL Rookie of the Month for December.

In preseason, Rimmer participated in not only the Barons' training camp but also the camp of the National Hockey League's Edmonton Oilers.

Rimmer got his first taste of professional hockey last spring when he played one game for the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs after completing his junior career with the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the Western Hockey League.  Rimmer last season led the WHL in minutes played (3,836) and total saves (2,106) while posting 3.19 goals against average, a .912 save percentage, a record of 24-30-10 and one shutout in 65 games with the Hurricanes.

The 2011-12 campaign was especially successful for Rimmer, who earned WHL First Team All-Star honors after leading the league in goals against average (2.43) and save percentage (.922), finishing tied for first in shutouts (5) and finishing tied for eighth in wins while going 31-12-1 in 46 games for the Tri-City Americans.  His standout efforts helped propel the Americans to the United States Division title.

Over three-plus Western League seasons- during which he also played for the Brandon Wheat Kings and Prince George Cougars in addition to the Americans and Hurricanes- Rimmer went 74-65-14 in 159 games and turned in a 3.01 goals against average, a .910 save percentage and ten shutouts. Before becoming a WHL workhorse, Rimmer spent parts of two seasons in the Alberta Junior Hockey League with the St. Albert Steel and Bonnyville Pontiacs.

Among CHL rookies, the 23-year old Frazee is tied for third in points (37), ranks fourth in goals (18) and ranks sixth in assists (19).  Frazee, who has turned in a plus/minus rating of +8 in 49 games, also ranks third in the overall in shorthanded goals (3).  The 6’ 3”, 210-pound North Vancouver product was named CHL Rookie of the Month for November.

Frazee last year scored seven goals and totaled 22 points in 16 games for Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario.  Frazee first arrived at Lakehead midway through the 2011-12 season, a campaign Frazee began with the ECHL’s Bakersfield Condors.  Frazee scored once and picked up three assists in 13 games as a Condor before making the move to the university ranks.

Frazee spent five-plus seasons in the major junior Western Hockey League, skating for the Portland Winter Hawks, Medicine Hat Tigers, Moose Jaw Warriors, Regina Pats and Kamloops Blazers between 2006 and 2011.  Frazee’s final junior campaign was his most productive.  He scored 31 goals and notched 72 points in 70 games while splitting the 2010-11 season between Regina and Kamloops.  In all, Frazee recorded 72 goals and 188 points in 313 career WHL games.

Rioux, 27, has scored five goals and totaled 25 points while posting a plus/minus rating of +7 in 48 games with the Mallards this season.  The 6’ 1”, 205 pound native of Riviere-du-Loup, Quebec, also played six games over two January stints with the AHL’s Iowa Wild. 

Last year, Rioux scored seven goals and registered 27 points with a plus/minus of +3 for the CHL’s Bloomington Blaze.  The durable blue liner played in each of the Blaze’s 66 regular season games last season and missed just a single game over his first two professional campaigns.

Rioux first played under Mallards coach and general manager Terry Ruskowski as a rookie with the CHL’s Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees in 2011-12.  Rioux scored five times, produced 21 points and turned in a plus/minus of +5 in 65 games with the Killer Bees.

Rioux turned pro after a three-year college career at St. Cloud State during which he totaled three goals and four assists in 26 games. Rioux played two seasons of junior hockey in the British Columbia League- with the Quesnel Millionaires and Prince George Spruce Kings- before heading to St. Cloud.

This is the second season in a row a trio of Mallards have been nominated for year-end CHL honors.  Last spring Mickey Lang (Most Valuable Player), Mike Hellyer (Rookie of the Year) and Matt Duffy (Most Outstanding Defenseman) were all award finalists, with Hellyer taking home the hardware.


 
Kaaba Shriners announces Media Day PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Carl Van Keuren   
Monday, 17 March 2014 07:53
Kaaba Shriners is pleased to announce that they will again be sponsoring the annual Media Day at the Masonic Center, 511 East 65th Street, Davenport, IA on April 1.
Media Day is where the local electronic and print personnel gets to great and meet the graduating senior football players and cheerleaders that have committed to participate in the North/South Football Game scheduled to be played July 26th at the UNI-Dome  in Cedar falls, IA.
The North/South football game is a successful fund raiser for the Shrine hospitals in Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis and Cincinnati who share equally in the proceeds.
The Shrine hospital network of 22 hospitals, provides exceptional care to children in need of medical care without cost to the patient, parent or guardian.
We would be pleased to welcome your representative to the luncheon, and be introduced to those in attendance. Hours are from 11:00 to 1:00.

 
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