(June 19, 2020, York, Pa.) — As a result of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball’s decision not to proceed with a 2020 ALPB Championship Season as scheduled, the York Revolution announced today the outlines of its alternate plans for the summer of 2020 at PeoplesBank Park. The plans include a wide variety of community uses and an attempt to bring some professional baseball to Central Pennsylvania this summer in an alternate form.
The Revolution are partnering with fellow Pennsylvania ALPB team the Lancaster Barnstormers to turn their long-time friendly rivalry into an inter-county baseball and new community outreach initiative. The plan would build on the long-time “War of the Roses” partnership of the two clubs. Senior managers from each club have already begun discussing options, as well as several new variations of the longstanding “War” that would welcome new activities and events in each city, with each being cross-promoted and co-hosted by the two clubs.
In addition to its pursuits with its Lancaster, PA, partners, the York Revolution has planned a variety of outdoor dining events, movies on the ballpark video board, hosting of youth and men’s league baseball games, and community events and private parties. The team has also begun marketing its large outdoor seating areas as alternative meeting and event spaces for area companies and organizations seeking options that confirm to health official recommendations during the pandemic. Many of these alternate events – such as patio parties, Young Revolution games, and the Class of 2020 Baseball and Softball Invitationals – have already been held or scheduled, pending a final league decision.
Echoing the sentiments of his peers at the league’s other clubs and the ALPB board of directors, York Revolution President Eric Menzer issued the following statement:
“Accepting the reality of not being able to safely and economically play our regular season is painful and heartbreaking – and we support this action, because It has become clear that player safety and economic considerations make what we typically do infeasible. We would never want to do anything that imperils the health of our fans, players, or employees.
This situation – nationally, not just in York – does present a grave economic threat to the sports industry. As businesses that rely on people gathering in crowds, we are on the leading edge of the uncertainty of the public health and economic crisis. We are not immune from those challenges. As they cautiously reopen, many other businesses and workers here in York are facing the same threat – they are worried about their viability, their jobs, and their families. Some will not survive, so let me be clear: We intend to be a survivor and to play baseball in PeoplesBank Park in 2021.
Doing so will require creativity and the patience and good will of our fans, season members, skybox owners, group and event customers, and sponsors. We are working diligently to develop a plan for each one of them that will deliver the value they seek in their relationship with us and enable us to come back in 2021. Our fantastic team of employees remains fully engaged in creating and implementing this plan. If you are one of the thousands of people who do business with us, we will be in touch soon – please bear with us.
Thirteen years ago, the York community rallied after years of effort to create the Revolution and build PeoplesBank Park – still the only minor league facility in the country to open debt-free, thanks to that extraordinary business and community partnership. At that time, 55 businesses made 10-year skybox and naming rights commitments to create much more than just a baseball team. In the 13 seasons since, thousands of Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts have camped in our outfield. Talented musicians and singers have performed the national anthem more than 900 times. More than 10,000 youth athletes have run onto the field with our players for that traditional game-opener. Couples have gotten engaged on our dugout tops, we have honored Yorkers with bobbleheads, we have held birthday and retirements celebrations, we have saluted high school state champions, we have helped non-profits raise more than a million dollars, and we have given a permanent home within our walls to the York Sports Hall of Fame.
In that time, Revolution players have hit 852 homeruns – 17 of the walk-off variety. Forty-two players have gone from York to MLB organizations, and 11 have fulfilled their dreams in the Majors. Players have come to York and fallen in love – with our town and, in some cases, with their future wives, with whom they have started families. We’ve retired jerseys and even honored the greatest 3rd baseman of all time with a plaza and a statue. And, of course, our team has brought three Atlantic League trophies back to York. Again and again, PeoplesBank Park has been the site of countless celebrations and achievements.
And even in these ongoing challenging times, we intend for it to host more of those. Although we have adjusted our operations, PeoplesBank Park is open this summer for amateur baseball games and low-intensity events as circumstances and government officials allow. Safety is our paramount concern, but we know that our great home is not just ours. Rather, we are the stewards of York’s ballpark, and we want to use it as much as we can. We have already held events such as our patio parties and scheduled events such as the upcoming Father’s Day batting practice and Class of 2020 Baseball and Softball Invitationals. More announcements and invitations will come through the summer about what we can do and how we can welcome you in.
When we fully emerge from months of caution and can play Revs games again, we will need a gathering place in the center of York County more than ever. We will need a place to salute all of the life-sustaining Yorkers who are seeing us through this time. We will need a place for kids to ride a carousel while their parents relax under a full moon with a tasty beverage, a place for families and friends to reconnect. We will need a place for businesses to thank and reward their employees for their good work. More than ever, we will need a place to come together with our fellow citizens.
With your help and support, we will be here to bring that to you.”