Man, I Love Living Here!
Philadelphia Phillies – Spring Training Baseball
By Tommy Duff
As I view another Phillies spring training game from my perch here at Bright House Field’s fabulous tiki-deck, I can’t help but reflect on how much of an impact this place has had on our community.
Walking up to the bar, which is overrun by hoards of fans, I’m greeted by a master of mix-oligy, Tommy Schaar, who knows and has in hand my favorite selection. The thing is, Tommy knows the favorite selection of thousands of yearly visitors to our area. Even though there are hundreds of thirsty souls waving dollars and whistling for attention, he and the rest of the bar staff calmly traverse from one “emergency” to the next serving up their choice of gratifying grog. This is the kind of hospitality that makes our visitors want to return year after year.
Dan Madden, the Group Sales Manager, tells me attendance at today’s game is around 9,500 fans, which is a bit shy of the new single-game record of 10,912. Already this year the season attendance record has been pushed up to 149,758 and there is still another game to go. Now, it may only seem like a baseball game, but the draw of that many fans from all over the world each year does so much more for our economy. It fills our hotels and restaurants, sells real estate, draws business, creates jobs and does wonders for our tax coffers. Not to mention what a great way to spend time with family and friends. That is a home run for Clearwater. The game is over, the Phillies win and so do we all.
Now I’m off to the beach, which today means a stop at the Palm Pavilion were the Hamilton Clan serves up the best sunsets this side of sunrise. Man, I Love Living Here!
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