The New York Times' Warren St. John writes about the popularity of Faith Nights at minor league and now major league stadiums. Teams work with local churches to bring in large groups anad entertain them with Christian bands and Biblical character bobblheads. My John the Baptist bobblehead was a bit disappointing as when I got it home, it fell apart.
The main reason for the increase in this kind of promotion is simple: they draw crowds.
So far the promotions seem to be working where they count the most, at the box office. Attendance at Faith Nights organized by the Nashville Sounds, a Class AAA baseball team, are 59 percent higher than the team's average attendance.
The Steeldogs average around 5,200 fans; Faith Night last month brought in just under 6,200.
Glenn Yaeger, the general manager of the Sounds, said he knew of only one promotion that was more effective than Faith Night: fireworks. Not one to let an opportunity pass, Mr. Yaeger now caps off Faith Nights with a fireworks display.
"Teams are always looking for ways to put fannies in the seats," Mr. [Brent] High [a promoter of these events] said, "and this is just a creative way to reach a certain demographic of people."
This is not a Southern phenomenon either. The San Francisco Giants have "Fellowship Day" scheduled for July 15. Then again the Giants are having a "night" or "day" for just about every demographic possible. The Irish get two of them!