Sports & Recreation
Skate for United Way PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Davenport Parks and Recreation   
Monday, 25 November 2013 15:07

 
2013 Iowa State Fair Boasts More than One Million Visitors PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Lori Chappell   
Monday, 25 November 2013 13:44

DES MOINES, IA (11/25/2013)(readMedia)-- "Happiness Is" the 2013 Iowa State Fair's final attendance tally of 1,045,048 visitors during its August 8-18 run. Fairgoers packaged meals for the food insecure, indulged in new Fair foods and enjoyed all the traditions of the Iowa State Fair during an unprecedented 11 days of beautiful weather.

More than 1500 Fairgoers volunteered in the Fair's first ever one-day meal-packaging event in partnership with Meals from the Heartland. Fairgoers packaged 255,096 meals to help alleviate life-threatening hunger around the world. Combined with the Fair's Food Drive discount day, a total of 46,453 pounds of food was donated to help the food insecure locally and globally. The event was part of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions' "Dream Big" food drive hosted by fairs throughout the world.

The first annual New Fair Food Contest and eighteen new foods debuted at this year's Fair. Introductory foods ranged from new flavors of funnel cakes and corndogs to the "Graham Champion" Fair Square and deep-fried brownie on-a-stick. Fairgoers voted for the Shrimp Corndog as the contest's inaugural champion of the new foods.

This year, the Fair hosted 6,650 livestock exhibitors with 21,787 animals throughout the 11 days, making it one of the world's largest livestock shows. Other highlights included two new equine events, the Supreme Six-Horse Hitch contest and cowboy mounted shooting demonstrations, as well as seven record-breakers in the Iowa Foundation for Agricultural Advancement's Sale of Champions.

Fairgoers flocked to the Agriculture Building to get a glimpse of the Butter Cow, a 102-year Fair tradition. This year's companion sculptures commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Lincoln Highway Bridge in Tama and the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.

Other highlights included more than 22,800 exhibitors with 63,550 entries, record attendance of 32,878 at the Little Hands on the Farm interactive farm exhibit, a new Fair recycling record of 35 tons and thousands of Fairgoers attending concerts at the newly-relocated Budweiser Stage.

"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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Arizona Slips Past Mallards in Shootout PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Brian Lavelle   
Monday, 25 November 2013 09:58

PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. (November 22, 2013) – Jason Morgan- who also scored twice in regulation- and Johan Ryd- who delivered the game winner- both converted penalty shots as the host Arizona Sundogs slipped past the Quad City Mallards 3-2 in a shootout Friday night.

The Mallards, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit in regulation, did earn one point for the shootout setback. Only Benjamin Dieude-Fauvel buried a penalty shot for the Mallards.

Mike Stinziani scored the third period goal that, in the end, forced overtime and- after the Mallards were outshot 5-0 in the extra period and the Sundogs failed to capitalize on a sudden death power play- the shootout. The Mallards were on the power play when Stinziani scored from point blank range at 8:24 of the third.

The Mallard comeback had started when Matt Duffy's blast from the top of the right wing got Quad City on the scoreboard for the first time at 5:57 of the second period .

The Mallards found themselves in a hole after Morgan scored twice in just under two and a half minutes in the first period. Morgan poked in a rebound at 6:29 of the first before a ripping shorthanded goal from the left wing circle at 8:58.

The Mallards return to action tomorrow night in Arizona. The Mallards next play at home next Friday, November 29 at 7:05 p.m. against the St. Charles Chill. November 29 is also a $1 Dog/$1 Beer Friday presented by 97X. Fans can purchase hot dogs and beer for $1 at iWireless Center concession stands during all Friday night home games.

Tickets for next Friday's game and all other Mallards regular season home games can be purchased at the iWireless Center ticket office, Ticketmaster outlets, through ticketmaster.com or through Ticketmaster charge-by-phone toll free at 1-800-745-3000.  The ticket office is open weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and on game days from 10:00 a.m. until the start of the second period.

 
BANDITS ANNOUNCE FRONT-OFFICE ADDITIONS PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Tuesday, 19 November 2013 16:16
Team adds assistant general managers for baseball operations and special events

DAVENPORT, Iowa (NOV. 19, 2013) The Quad Cities River Bandits have made a pair of offseason acquisitions, as they announced on Tuesday their two new assistant general managers, whom the Midwest League club will have oversee the baseball operations of the franchise and the year-round special events at Modern Woodmen Park.

The front office team welcomes Travis Painter as the Assistant General Manager of Baseball Operations and Taylor Satterly as the Assistant General Manager of Special Events.

“We are very pleased to add two talented and experienced new members to our front office team,” said River Bandits co-owner Dave Heller. “Travis brings diverse experiences in Minor League Baseball and is widely regarded as a rising star within the industry, and Taylor is the kind of outstanding home-grown talent we pride ourselves on hiring. She has proven skills, great experience and the kind of familiarity with the Quad Cities region that only a local could have. Together, they are going to take baseball and special events at Modern Woodmen Park to a whole new level!”


Painter joins the River Bandits from the Pensacola (Fla.) Blue Wahoos, Double-A affiliate of the Cincinatti Reds in the Southern League. A native of Luray, Va., and graduate of James Madison (Harrisonburg, Va.) University, Painter previously served as assistant general manager for the Potomac (Va.) Nationals, the advanced Class-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals in the Carolina League. He also helped start the Pensacola franchise and open its new stadium in his two-year stint with the Blue Wahoos. Painter will assist with the day-to-day operations of the club and help oversee many of the River Bandits front office departments.


“I am excited to be joining the River Bandits, and helping to take this already extraordinary team to the next level,” Painter said. “It’s been a great transition to the Quad Cities, and I look forward to jumping into my new role, and meeting lots of new people.”


Satterly comes to the River Bandits after eight years at the Stoney Creek Inn of Moline, Ill., most recently as the Assistant General Manager. A native of Henry County, Ill., Satterly graduated from Western Illinois University in the Quad Cities. She will lead the special events department at Modern Woodmen Park and will oversee all sales, planning, setup and cleanup of special events - including weddings, rehearsal dinners, corporate meetings, luncheons, holiday parties, fundraisers and many other year-round events.


"I would like to thank Dave Heller and Bob Herrfeldt for this opportunity to join such a great organization so committed to outstanding customer service,” Satterly said. “I am very excited to use my years of experience in the hospitality industry to help make Modern Woodmen Park the first choice for weddings, parties and all kinds of events here in the Quad Cities."


The River Bandits, the Class-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, will open the 2014 Midwest League season at Modern Woodmen Park Thursday, April 3. A full schedule of home and road games for 2014 is available at www.riverbandits.com, and ticket plans for the 2014 season are now on sale.

UP NEXT: Lock in your season ticket plan – with new lower prices – for the 2014 season! A deposit of $25 per seat by December 31 enters you in a drawing for a free suite rental at an April 2014 home game. 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 112 feet over the playing field, is planned for this spring, along with a carousel, a new ride called a “Drop and Twist,” and many other new games and attractions. In 2013, the team unveiled a new 300-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.

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Centennial Field, Modern Woodmen Park honored by Ballpark Digest for 2013 Ballpark Renovations PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Tuesday, 19 November 2013 10:25

Cost-effective upgrades from the Vermont Lake Monsters and the Quad Cities River Bandits shows a commitment to fans and earned recognition from Ballpark Digest for Best Ballpark Renovations (Under $1 Million) of the 2013 season.

Improving fan amenities in a cost-effective manner is always a challenge for team owners. In Burlington, Vermont and Davenport, Iowa, team owners managed to pull off serious upgrades on a budget, as Centennial Field, home of the Vermont Lake Monsters (short season; NY-Penn League) and Modern Woodmen Park, home of the Quad Cities River Bandits (Low Class A; Midwest League) are the winners of the best renovations (under $1 million) for 2013 from Ballpark Digest, the leading guide to ballparks and baseball on the Internet.

In both cases, the improvements were multiyear efforts, with 2013 the first season they were available during the whole campaign. And, in both cases, the improvements were significant enhancements that featured fans first.

“It takes a serious commitment to fan comfort to take on improvements like these, and in both cases it's pretty amazing to see such upgrades cost less than a million dollars,” said Kevin Reichard, Ballpark Digest publisher. “These teams and their owners deserve recognition for going above and beyond.”

In Burlington, the Lake Monsters worked with the city on a renovation plan that included the installation of permanent seating on what had been a bare-concrete grandstand. The concrete general-admission sections in both the first- and third-base grandstands were replaced by 1,500 brand new permanent fixed seats, giving fans a more comfortable and enhanced view of the game. The backstop behind home plate was been moved out 12 feet closer to home plate and roughly 100 seats have been created in a new seating area to give fans a field level view of the action. In addition, a seating area was been created next to the visitors dugout in front of the third base grandstand. Both the home and away dugouts were been demolished and replaced with larger and more modern dugouts that are approximately 50 percent larger with more amenities than the previous dugouts.

Finally, the fences surrounding Centennial Field were moved 10-20 feet closer to the playing field, decreasing the foul territory while enlarging the BBQ section down the leftfield line to create more fan space for a better viewing experience.

The changes extended the life of the oldest venue in affiliated baseball. The site has been home to baseball since 1904, and officially opened on April 17, 1906 with University of Vermont's 10-4 victory over the University of Maine. The current concrete and steel main grandstand was erected in 1922, to replace the original wooden bleachers, which burned down in 1913.

“It has been fantastic to see the transformation of Centennial Field over the past two seasons,” said New York-Penn League President Ben Hayes. “The increased fan amenities, in addition to the resources committed to needed ballpark infrastructure, has ensured that Vermont Lake Monsters baseball will continue its great tradition of support in and around the Burlington, VT area for years to come.”

“The Vermont Lake Monsters are incredibly honored to have been named the recipient of the award,” said Lake Monsters Vice President Kyle Bostwick. “We are appreciative of Ray's (Vermont Lake Monsters owner Ray Pecor) commitment to Lake Monsters baseball which allowed up to do these renovations, and excited to be able to continue to provide the best in summertime entertainment to our fans.”

“Today's pro-baseball environment is sometimes too focused on the latest and the greatest,” Reichard said. “The renovation of Centennial Field, the oldest affiliated ballpark, should be noted by baseball fans everywhere as a cause for celebration.”

In Davenport, Iowa, the River Bandits took what had been an underused concrete patio and turned it into a glass-enclosed, climate-controlled space. In a northern clime, an open space can't be used for most of the year, but the new Sky Deck boasts three sides of gorgeous glass windows, bringing the feel of being outdoors while still being completely enclosed. Four glass garage doors overlook the picturesque scene of Modern Woodmen Park and the Centennial Bridge stretching across the Mississippi River. On the other side is a spectacular view of downtown Davenport.

The Sky Deck also has a center partition that can create two separate areas for breakout sessions or smaller meeting spaces. The space can accommodate up to 250 guests for a game, and the Sky Deck is used year-round for dozens of special events, including wedding ceremonies, receptions, rehearsal dinners, birthdays, corporate meetings and luncheons.

Add in some other improvements to the suite level at Modern Woodmen Park – bathroom renovations, new carpeting, new granite countertops in all 20 suites and a nice revamp of the air-conditioned Sports Lounge off the main ballpark concourse – and you have some very notable upgrades that cost just $715,000.

“Our new glass-enclosed Sky Deck and new bar for the club lounge both move us closer to our vision of turning Modern Woodmen Park into a year-round multi-purpose venue that is much bigger than baseball,” said team owner Dave Heller. “It is the product of a great partnership between the team and the City of Davenport, and is exactly the sort of thing that has helped make Modern Woodmen Park a unique and special ballpark and the pride of the Quad Cities.”

“It's really easy to see how great the Sky Deck works: it's a perfect gathering spot every day of the year, and it's obviously turned into a popular attraction for Davenport,” Reichard said. “The River Bandits are known for implementing serious ballpark improvements annually, and it’s clearly resonated with fans.”

ABOUT THE BALLPARK DIGEST AWARDS

Each year Ballpark Digest honors noteworthy accomplishments in the baseball world, whether it be Major League Baseball, Minor League Baseball, independent baseball, summer-collegiate baseball or college baseball. Readers are asked to submit nominations for awards in specific categories; Ballpark Digest editors then go though the submissions (numbering some 300 pages of documentation last year). The awards cover both individual accomplishments as well as team accomplishments. This is the fifth season for the Ballpark Digest Awards. A complete listing of Ballpark Digest Awards can be found at www.ballparkdigest.com/awards.

ABOUT BALLPARK DIGEST/AUGUST PUBLICATIONS

The leading Website covering the culture and business of baseball since its inception in 2002, Ballpark Digest (www.ballparkdigest.com) has been called an “indispensable” guide to baseball and ballparks by The New York Times; it’s been used as a source by publications and Websites ranging from The Wall Street Journal to Epicurious.com. August Publications is a publisher based in Middleton, Wis. Besides Ballpark Digest, August Publications websites include SpringTrainingOnline.com, ArenaDigest.com, YellowstoneInsider.com and NewWest.net.

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