By Gilbert Guru
Even a pandemic cannot stop America’s favorite pastime. The Arizona Diamondbacks recently sold out their entire spring training allotment of tickets in less than 24 hours. A home run for ticket sales. Enjoy a seventh-inning stretch and an all-American hotdog smothered in ketchup, mustard, and coronavirus at spring training tradition.
The Arizona Diamondbacks are scheduled for 14 spring training home games, and those lucky enough to grab one of the limited number of tickets hold some of the Valley’s premiere facets to experience a major sporting event safely and in person. Spring training is an open air environment, where the chance to contract coronavirus will be vastly lower than other in door alternatives. Masks and social distancing are required whenever applicable in order to conduct spring training in a safe manner. People are ready to return to normalcy and it seems spring training is a popular way to do it.
To sell out an entire allotment of tickets across 14 separate dates is no easy feat. Maybe its COVID fatigue, maybe its hope that the vaccine will work but hopefully, spring training creates a positive trend and encourages other sporting events to open safely. It is the Valley’s chance to show that the community can safely and responsibly attend an outdoor event without creating a massive spike coronavirus cases.
Spring training being opened to the public will aid the Valley economically as well, especially during the pandemic when so many businesses are struggling to keep afloat. For decades, Scottsdale Stadium has been an integral part of the downtown area and a vital economic driver for the city. Just ask most any local business or restaurant. Spring training provides a lot of revenue to local businesses near the stadium, whether it be restaurants, hotels and various other locally-owned businesses that rely on spring training revenue.
With the recent success of the Waste Management Phoenix Open earlier this month and Barrett Jackson Car Auction returning late March, it is important now more than ever to support events that that are continuing to provide economic support to our communities at a time when it needs it most while still abiding by the current restrictions and protocols.