2013 Attendance Thread

Discussion in 'Tampa Bay Rowdies' started by Bluesfan, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. Bluesfan

    Bluesfan Member

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    Just over two months from our first home match of the season, the second leg of the I4 matchup. Will be interesting to see if that game draws well. The club seems to be promoting it on its website/social networking sites and I was contacted by my ticket rep about the game as well. Curious to see how many advanced tickets they have sold for that one.

    Any word on how season ticket or group sales are going so far?

    It would be nice if they can get their act together this season and promote the team to the point where they can sell out the season opener and then the Independence Day match, then draw around 4,000 for the other four games.


  2. speedcake

    speedcake Member

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    I hope you are right. In my opinion, if they don't move the dial significantly this season the St. Pete experiment needs to be put to bed. We have two seasons at Al Lang under our belts and gearing up for a 3rd, if we are still averaging 3k by October then its time to start speaking up as a fan base.
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  3. speedcake

    speedcake Member

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    I hope at least a couple K show up for the I4 derby home game. those games will likely draw more over time and I don't have my hopes up for a big turnout, but considering its against City, its at Al Lang for a change and the team is promoting it decently well I'd think a couple thousand is doable.
  4. Bluesfan

    Bluesfan Member

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    With limited options to play elsewhere, unless they are going to cohabit with VSI in their magical modular stadium, the team needs to make it work in St. Pete. I do agree that this is a make or break season, at least from my stand point as a fan. They are defending champs, they succeeded in getting people to the playoff matches, they have a new marketing team. If they can't move the needle on attendance this year, then it isn't going to happen. Not in St. Pete and not in Tampa. It might just come down to money, or lack there of, to have a break through.

    My feeling is that the Rowdies have a remarkably steady attendance in comparison to other teams. That is great knowing that around 3,000 are going to show up to each and every match. The problem is that number has been flat for three seasons (on both sides of the bay) and we have very few spikes in attendance for special events. I am talking a fifty percent or better increase over average attendance. The 2010 opener drew 8k, the 2012 Independence Day match drew 4,700, and the Soccer Bowl match drew over 6k. Other than those three events, the attendance has pretty much followed the baseline. Hopefully that will change this season.

    If they pull off building their own place in Tampa, that would be a perfect world, but somehow, I don't think that is going to happen.
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  5. FNovoa

    FNovoa Member

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    You both are correct. So correct.
  6. FNovoa

    FNovoa Member

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    Is it messed up that I expect a good draw against Wiz City? I, for one love to build rivalries. Let hope the Rowdies-City derby is a good thing. Along with FTL. I would be disappointed if the number is low. Slow and steady on building this rivalry against Orlando. It's good for them, good for us.

    It's also important to start off the 2013 season with a bang. Preseason included.
  7. Bluesfan

    Bluesfan Member

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    With just the one local preseason match, I would hope that it would at least draw near our average. They seem to be promoting it heavily and well in their usual channels, I would suspect that they are treating it just like any other match (group sales, marketing, etc).
  8. XaviusX

    XaviusX Member

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    As was talked about in the 2012 Attendance Thread, there is heavy suspicion that the Rowdies may be building an office and practice field on the Tomato Patch site which had originally been the site of their failed Stadium project. David Laxer has apparently leased or sold a small part of the land to Wawa, Inc. (Gas Station Chain), but there is plenty of land left to build an Office/Practice Field if that's what they want to do.

    If they make this happen, it would be add tremendous confidence in this ownership that they're willing to make this club sustainable and perhaps it'll be one huge step towards actually getting a Soccer-Specific Stadium built in the near future.
  9. Bluesfan

    Bluesfan Member

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    A practice facility would be nice. Selling more tickets would be even nicer.:p
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  10. G Enriquez

    G Enriquez Member

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    The thing that bothers me is,the Tampa Bay area has thousands of kids and adults who play soccer and that are just fans of the game. I just wish that more of them would support our local team and not just some team from overseas.
  11. G Enriquez

    G Enriquez Member

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    I can give you all an example of one of those 8K fans that attended our home opener in Tampa that only went to a few matches. This gentlemen sons play local club soccer and one plays for the University of Tampa. When I asked him if he attends any games,he said that he didn't enjoy watching soccer in a baseball stadium.
  12. speedcake

    speedcake Member

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    It'd be easy to try and dismiss these kinds of fans, the Timbers drew decently well in the lower divisions while playing in a minor league baseball stadium.

    But the fact is the stadium situation is a turn off for alot of people who might be regulars if the Rowdies were playing in a proper facility.

    The sooner we get one the better.
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  13. G Enriquez

    G Enriquez Member

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    Also,Jeld Wen Field is centrally located and,has light rail access. Damn,I want to get up there for a couple of matches!
    http://media.oregonlive.com/timbers/photo/jeld-wen-field-after-houston-matchjpg-0cf39012d731081b.jpg
  14. Hunter.S.Soccer

    Hunter.S.Soccer Member

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    Since Speedcake is a knowledgeable poster, I'll assume he was only pointing out the "well Portland did it, why can't we" argument to diffuse that point to some degree; however, others on this site continue to make that point in ignorance. People should stop pointing to Portland's stadium situation as though we'd be able to replicate it at Al Lang. That's just not possible unless they tear-down that old, crumbling place.

    I've been to the Portland Stadium. It's a completely different configuration (before AND after Jeld-Wen remodeling). The Portland Stadium (now Jeld-Wen) was built as a multi-purpose stadium - with more of a "rectangular-field-friendly" configuration. Before Jeld-Wen, the "right field" foul line grandstands ran nearly the entire length of the soccer sidelines. This gave the majority of fans an option to view the game from a good vantage point. Al Lang was purpose-built for baseball with small grandstands surrounding the infield only. The grandstands on the "right field" line at Al Lang don't even reach mid-field in the soccer configuration.

    I've been to many, many minor-league stadiums in my days, Al Lang offers the second worse vantage point among any that I have seen (the only worse one EVER in my life was GSF).
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  15. XaviusX

    XaviusX Member

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    As soon as the City Commission of St. Petersburg and the Baseball Commission finally realize that Baseball is DEAD in that City, the sooner they can make a decision on what to do with Al Lang Stadium. With the Pier being torn down and then rebuilt, there's talk that Al Lang Stadium may be next.

    Even if they decide to tear down Al Lang Stadium and build something Non-Sports related, at least it will push the Rowdies' F.O. to very seriously consider where they want to take this club.
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  16. Bluesfan

    Bluesfan Member

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    Well it doesn't look like the Baseball Commission is giving up on baseball. They finally updated their website and they have even more baseball planned for this year than last.
    http://www.stpetebaseball.org/
    The baseball events run to just a few weeks before the Rowdies' season begins.
  17. FNovoa

    FNovoa Member

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    I wish we had more info on other sites (if any) that the Rowdies have looked at. I was for the move to ALF originally, but after a couple of years there we really need a new stadium, im over Aging ALF. I guess ive become a snob, but i feel we deserve better. A new SSS gives us better identity, viability and support.
  18. WhiteStar Warriors

    WhiteStar Warriors BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    I agree, but the City of St. Pete and Tampa are battling it out over Rays, honestly I hope Rays move to Tampa, that leaves Rowdies the only team in St. Pete. and I prefer hanging out at Crowley's and downtown instead of playing beer pong on some field in the middle of nowhere.
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  19. FNovoa

    FNovoa Member

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    Those were good times the first season. You forgot kamakazee shots as well.
  20. WhiteStar Warriors

    WhiteStar Warriors BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    I know, but when you think about it Tampa is slowly becoming oversaturated with sport franchises.

    I mean the team is in it's 3rd year at St. Pete and it is D2, but hopefully the fanbase will grow, we have a solid hardcore group of fans and we can build on that because Rowdies may suck sometime too..and we need the base to prop the team up.
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  21. TBSoccer

    TBSoccer New Member

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    I guess everyone is drinking the cool-aid? How do you expect attendance to improve without proper marketing? No TV or Radio Commercials and no newspaper adds promoting the game against Orlando Soccer City or Season Ticket sales. Only the hardcore Rowdies fan, keeps up with their website and social media. The average fan does not even know about the Orlando City game or when the regular season starts. Hell, the average fan does not even know about the split season.

    The hard truth is, you have a D2 soccer team in a Major League town that has the Bucs, Bolts and Rays. About our large adult and youth soccer base in Tampa Bay, why do they not come out in big waves? Because it is D2 soccer and they do not know any of the players in the league. No TV Contract = not enough exposure or interest in the team and league in general. No TV-contract = no big sponsorship dollars, not allowing the league to grow.

    So let's stop wishing and pretending and accept the fact, its D2 soccer.
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  22. Support Your Local FC

    Support Your Local FC Member

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    Hmmmm. Maybe I'm projecting here but my impression is that regular posters here are pessimistic, not "drinking the cool-aid".

    San Antonio showed last year that you can market a D2 soccer team properly and draw respectable crowds. Indianapolis already has over 1,500 season ticket holders and they don't even have a name yet.

    Consensus seems to be that 3,000 a game isn't too bad for D2 soccer with no real marketing, but it is still discouraging. What would happen if the owners spent some money on marketing? Would they get enough new fans to justify the cost? What exactly are their long term plans? They haven't been all that communicative.

    They made some encouraging moves at end of season last year with hiring that new guy formerly with the TB Lightning, and signing a deal with the same marketing firm that works for the Lightning, so maybe ticket sales will improve this year, but I'm assuming no one has noticed any signs of increased Rowdies marketing yet or they would have mentioned it by now.
  23. Support Your Local FC

    Support Your Local FC Member

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    As already noted,the Jelly (formerly the Piggy) has a rectangular layout suitable for soccer viewing. In fact the stadium was originally built for greyhound racing and gridiron football, and only later modified for baseball. Thus it was easy to modify it back for soccer, and even when the Timbers were sharing the Piggy with the Beavers baseball team, the site-lines were very good for soccer viewing.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeld-Wen_Field

    Plus, also as noted, the stadium is centrally located in a city with a very good public transport system. Also, as seen on Portlandia, Portland is where the young people go to retire. The USL Timberx could build up a respectable fan base of 18-45 year old hipsters; they didn't have to rely on the soccer mom demographic to sell tickets. Totally different situation from what the Rowdies face in Tampa/St. Pete.

    But I agree a negative game day experience is a turnoff. The devil is in the details though which is why you can't compare Portland's "baseball stadium" with GSF or ALF or most other stadiums designed for baseball (though a few, like New York's Polo Grounds, were rectangular enough to be pretty good for viewing sports played on rectangular fields).
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  24. FNovoa

    FNovoa Member

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    Dream of the 90's is alive in Portland.
  25. Cleat-USA

    Cleat-USA New Member

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    The people reading and posting here don't need to hear this, but I think it is important for the soccer community to accept a few facts of life. The first is that holding out interest until MLS comes to the market is stupid. Lets face it, while I am all for supporting MLS, the distance between MLS and the best club teams in the world is quite wide. So when comparing NASL to MLS, you are still talking about two leagues that aren't "world class" per se. Once you come to that realization and you can focus on the beauty that is "we have professional soccer in this area" then you can start to reap the rewards of throwing yourself into the Rowdies/NASL.

    Secondly, as one poster alluded to above, the Al Lang site is terrific, but the Al Lang facility is not optimal. The Rays departure is inevitable. They're discussing a negotiating fee for the Rays to talk to Tampa. Once they actually leave then maybe the city will get more serious about securing professional sports in downtown St Pete. St Pete has had sports for 90 years now. Once the Rays leave there needs to be something to fill that void. The Rowdies are a perfect fit IMO. This is a discussion for another thread but even if the USL/MLS relationship places the NASL's existence in doubt (which I don't think it will), all the communities that host NASL teams would certainly be perfect fits for an expanded USL/MLS reserve team structure.

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