You could say the Chicago Cubs are on cloud nine right about now coming off their historic win last season to capture the elusive World Series title that has pestered them for exactly 108 years.
In their playoff run, the Cubs outsold every team by a long shot. Ticket prices reached all-time highs this past year with the Cubs finally reaching the World Series looking for redemption. From 2015, Cubs postseason ticket prices jumped nearly 400% to 2016, with an average price of ticket around $2,500 and the most expensive ticket going for nearly $20,000.
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Outside of the insane ticket prices, the bars just outside of Wrigley were filled to the brim with fans literally sleeping in the streets to get a seat in the bar to watch the game on any television their eyes could see. The overall demand that was generated by the Cubs entering the World Series was like none ever experienced in the history of MLB.
Only days ago, the Chicago Cubs unveiled their new 50,000 square feet area, Park at Wrigley, just outside of famed Wrigley field. This new facility boasts a huge grassy lawn for fans to enjoy with friends and fans surrounded by beer vendors, meticulously designed landscaping, fan attractions and much more. The Park at Wrigley also introduced a multi-story building that houses the administration offices of the organization, a brand new “tavern-style” restaurant for all and by far the most important, a huge two-story, state-of-the-art merchandise store that rivals the best in the world.
The new facility houses every merchandise item a fan could conjure up, as well as, huge video boards advertising the team, upcoming games, or other events happening at the park.
As sports organization depend largely on revenue generations from the selling of merchandise, the Cubs are now trying to set the new standard for fan experience and merchandise availability.
The Park at Wrigley could not have opened at a better time, just a day before their season opener, against the Los Angeles Dodgers, a rivaled program who the Cubs outlasted in their championship run the year before.
As fans will be able to tell when traveling to a game now, the Cubs are taking advantage of all they have created building this brand to a whole new standard for baseball clubs and for this club as a business, the only direction is up.
About the Author: Gray Townsend is a junior Sport Management major at Southern Methodist University. He is also a member of the SMU Men's Golf team and is originally from Winston Salem, NC. You can connect with him via LinkedIn.