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Padres Release FanFest Information; New Events 

With just a little over 8 days to spare, the Padres released tentative information regarding next Saturday’s FanFest event today. The basic events and forums that fans experienced in years past will return with a few new opportunities and tidbits thrown into the fold.

The FanFest website has been up for a few weeks now, but only starting today did it reveal actual substantive information regarding the event’s festivities and programs. Fans will once again have the opportunity to register for early admission to the events (simply click “Register for early access”), but fans should still be advised to arrive as early as possible to make sure they get all the autographs, forum events, and other fanfare they hope to obtain and experience from this year’s event.

This year, only 5,000 autograph vouchers will be handed out and the schedules have not yet been posted. The team also advises fans to attend early for the “limited Garage Sale (game-used) merchandise” available. Season ticket members, as usual, will have the highest priority for entering the park and will be admitted an hour and a half prior to the gates opening.

One of the biggest pieces of information to come from the activation of the site is that fans will have their first chance at purchasing “opening night” tickets for March 30th’s contest between the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers at Petco Park. Fans can obtain their opening day ticket by purchasing a Padres pack, which is similar to some of the other “mini-packs” of tickets they have sold in the past.

Perhaps more interestingly is the inclusion of a few new features for FanFest attendees. Fans will have the opportunity to stop by the Jerry Coleman statue near the East Village gate and record some of their favorite memories of the legendary Padres broadcaster. Fans will be recorded for what could be future use as the team commemorates the late-great Jerry Coleman with tributes throughout the 2014 season.

Another new segment of the event will be pitching in the new Padres home bullpen. Fans will get the chance to throw like a Major League Pitcher by being allowed to step up to the mound and have a brief pitching session in the ‘pen. The catch a fly-ball and run the bases events will also be returning to FanFest.

There will also be a “Social Media Lounge” at the event, where fans can stop by and keep abreast or take part in all of the new Social Media endeavors that the team will be implementing this season. Twitter followers will be encouraged to use #SDFanFest in their communiques throughout the day.

The event’s schedule and information will be updated throughout the week as the event approaches the horizon. FanFest, presented by State Farm®, will take place on February 8th at 10:00am. Season Ticket Holders may enter the park starting at 8:30am, and early registrants can enter starting at 9:30am.

In addition to the festivities going on at Petco Park on Saturday, the Friarhood will be extending an invitation to all congregation members (that means you!) to a post-FanFest party at the Tin-Fish just outside the park in the Gaslamp district. Friarhood congregation members from our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages are all encouraged to attend and also take part in our Social Media events that will be going on throughout the day.

Make sure to follow @Friarhood on Twitter and to wear your Friarhood gear at FanFest for a chance to win some great Padres prizes and merchandise. See you all at the ballpark!

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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!