DOWNTOWN — After making numerous less-than-successful attempts to attract more fans to games at Petco Park, the Padres franchise seems confident that they finally got it right with their latest marketing strategy: playing feature length movies on the Petco Park Jumbotron.
“We tried several promotions this year that never really caught on, such as free hat night and free ShamWow night … attendance was still dismal,” said Martin Young, senior event coordinator for the Padres. “After the series with the Diamondbacks, we knew we’d have to try something totally different to attract fans.”
On May 6th, Petco Park attendance for one game hit a record low of seven people, six if you don’t count Jake Peavy’s mother, who sat in the front row.
“It was a sad day for the Padres,” said Young. “My son’s little league game had a better turnout. The Padres were losing fans faster than Milli Vanilli.”
The infamous ‘seven fan game’ is what prompted the Padres to act quickly with a strategy to draw in more people.
The Petco Park premier of the new Star Trek movie, which played last week during the second home game against Reds, attracted 30,000 fans, a record turnout for the 2009 season.
“It was a great night for Petco Park … jocks and geeks were coexisting in perfect harmony,” said Young. “Where else can you get a hot dog, beer, Padres game, and movie for under $20?”
Padres fan Sam Fletcher, who attended the Star Trek premier exclaimed, “The movie was so awesome, I almost wet my pants during the 7th inning. And I heard from a friend the next day that the Padres beat the Reds, which is also kinda cool.”