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Padres Preview Promotions, Local Flavor 

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Last night the San Diego Padres held their annual “Media Preview Night,” where the organization puts on a showcase of all the new and exciting dining options and other amenities available for the upcoming season. The showcase was a delight as several different vendors were represented, including fan favorites Hodad’s, Ballast Point Brewing, Anthony’s Fish Grotto, and Stone Brewing Co. In addition to these favorites, there were new offerings from Green Flash Brewing Co., Mission Brewery, Ryan Bros. Coffee, and Wings N’ Things. A full display of the various drinks and food items were out for everyone to try, including the addition of the famous Guido Burger from Hodad’s – which is now available at Petco Park.

Ballast Point was excited to announce the opening of a new in-park location called “The Draft,” which is located at the old PCL club near the first base line on the field level. The woman I spoke with informed me that a full line of brews and spirits, in addition to their latest batch of Ballast Point Whiskey, will be available all season long at both “The Draft” and the Ballast Point beer garden in left field. Craft beer fans are sure to be pleased with this expansion, and they will also be glad to know that Green Flash Brewing and Mission Brewery are going to get more involved with the park concessions as well. Also offered on the alcoholic side of beverage concessions will be Copa Di Vino: small, ready-made goblets of wine that are as easy to drink as they are to hold – no fancy glassware necessary!

If spirits or beer aren’t your cup of tea, fear not as there is going to be a new line of tea and coffees offered at the park as well. Ryan Bros. coffee – while offering “Irish Coffee” at the park via a healthy dose of Jameson – will be serving San Diego style fresh coffee at the park. Additionally, Hodad’s is just a step closer to having their full menu in force at the park (only thing missing is the Blue Jay Burger) and Wings N’ Things was happy to be expanding around the park to offer delicious new food items for fans of all ages. Included in this foray of food were pretzel bun philly-cheese “San Diego” sandwiches and fresh clam chowder for the friar faithful to feast upon. And of course, there are also going to be some delicious and improved pulled pork sandwiches from Phil’s BBQ this upcoming season. 

While the variety of food was wonderful, the highlight of this event was most definitely the infusion of local San Diego businesses into the stadium concessions – a goal that was heralded by Padres President and CEO, Mike Dee. I was fortunate enough to grab Mike in between stuffing my face to ask about the local flavor that was present at the park.

“Bringing in the local merchants and businesses of San Diego is something we invested a lot of time and money into,” said Dee as he enjoyed a cup of Ryan Bros. coffee. “If you ask any San Diegan what they like to eat or where they like to shop, they’ll probably say ‘something from San Diego.’ So we will give the fans what they want.”

Dee was also excited to note that local businesses were prepared to step up and provide sponsorship and funding for ‘premium giveaways’ as the ownership group prepares to re-vitalize Baseball Night in San Diego. “Opening night was a wonderful example of that; a packed house and a good game is only part of it though. We hope to continue to sell out a few more times this season, preferably every Saturday night home game, with the incorporation of awesome giveaways and promotions for every Padres fan to enjoy.”

There was certainly no shortage of impressive giveaways from what I could see at Preview night. In addition to Three Jersey Giveaways this season and a “Bring Back the Brown” themed weekend on May 24th, the Padres are also offering a beach blanket giveaway night, a Petco Park 10th Anniversary Canvas Print, and a premium Padres travel bag with the Padres military logo emblazoned on the side. Indeed, fans will have a lot of cool things in store for them when they walk through the gates this season.

While Mike Dee and the Padres are doing everything they can to provide entertainment off the field, the players should hopefully put together a nice season on the field to create a premium product down at the park for all fans to enjoy.

If Sunday’s Opening Night victory against the Dodgers in addition to the preview night we saw last night is a sign of things to come, then it should be a great season down at Petco Park for everyone to enjoy.

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About the author: Ian Edward Russell Smith

Ian is a former writer for the San Diego Padres, having worked as the Padres' "In-Season Blogger" during the 2015 season. Ian wrote as a member of the Friarhood's writing staff between parts of 2013-2015, writing over 100 articles over that span. In addition to being a writer, Ian is also a recent graduate of California Western School of Law in San Diego, having earned a Juris Doctor, as well as his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science/Law & Society from the University of California, Riverside. Be sure to follow Ian on Twitter (@SDRedBull8) to see what other ramblings he's posted about the Padres, San Diego, and baseball in general!