|Pelicans Hit a Grand Slam in Myrtle Beach|
The Pelicans expect to draw over 200,000 fans their first season and have already sold more merchandise than any other minor league baseball club this year. Everyone will agree that the team has surpassed all expectations and proved that baseball can succeed in a tourist town.
Myrtle Beach has been without a baseball team since the Hurricanes moved out in 1992. Part of the reason for moving was poor attendance, which was attributed to the location of the old stadium. Many others repeated the sentiment that baseball simply could not survive in a resort town.
Game tickets were hot commodities in Myrtle Beach with residents and tourists.
But Capitol had other ideas. Determined not to repeat the same mistakes made by the Hurricanes, CBC found the perfect location to build the new stadium (close to the beach), kept the ticket prices low (cheaper than most other activities and attractions), and built a stadium that reinforced the small, close-knit community feel (residents claim they always run into someone they know) found in Myrtle Beach. With over 1,400 season ticket holders, the team appears to have attracted about the same amount of tourists and residents alike.
“Overall, it’s been a tremendous experience the first year,” said Steve Malliet, General Manager of the Pelicans. “It’s never easy to get it done, but once it’s done, it’ll change people’s minds in a hurry if you can do it right.”