May 25, 2006

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Nashua Publisher's Note: Think Hippo, then flush
By Jeff Rapsis

Well, here we are—opening weekend for the Nashua Pride! Starting Thursday, May 25, baseball returns to Holman Stadium for the summer, as fans fill the stands and the local team takes the field.

That’s where you come in. Team owner John Stabile has said the Pride can only prosper if the community is willing to offer support. If Nashua wants a ball team, then everyone needs to remember the vacation-time principle: use it or lose it.

So buy some tickets, attend some games, see what it’s like to spend a night (or an afternoon, if your boss lets you) at an old-fashioned ballpark—one that’s not dominated by glitzy video replays or towering glass-walled hotels.

By “support,” Stabile is also referring the many companies and organizations whose involvement is necessary for the team to pay the bills. Advertising and promotional revenue are big part of any ballclub’s balance sheet.

We here at Hippo intend to do our part. That’s why I’m pleased to announce that this newspaper has recently struck a major facility naming rights deal with the Nashua Pride for the 2006 season.

Naming rights? Of course! Every sports facility these days is named after a corporate sponsor. Up in Manchester, they have Verizon Wireless Arena (with Brady-Sullivan field inside) and Merchantsauto.com Stadium. So what about Nashua? What about Hippo?

Well, renaming Holman Stadium as the “Hippodrome,” wasn’t really feasible. Even if it was, such a deal might be a little pricey for your friendly neighborhood weekly newspaper to swing.

Instead, we opted for something a bit more modest but no less meaningful. So, for the 2006 season of the Nashua Pride, I’m proud to announce here for the first time that HippoPress has acquired naming rights to (drum roll, please....) the Holman Stadium bathrooms!

That’s right! All season long, instead of just using the facilities, you’ll be visiting the “HippoPress Bathrooms at Holman Stadium.” Both gents and ladies rooms will be sponsored by this newspaper.

This is quite a coup for us, especially since we’re not flush with cash. Har! And while it might not vault Hippo into the major leagues of the facility naming rights deal, it gives us an important and personal connection with virtually every fan attending a game at Holman Stadium this summer.

Besides, the deal also has a lot of potential marketing synergies. Bathrooms and paper have had a long and historic tie, so the deal is a natural fit for both sides.

So, in the weeks to come, we’ll be delivering copies of HippoPress directly to some of the most popular spots for reading material in Holman Stadium. We’ll also post pages of the paper in key locations in each restroom to enhance the overall quality of the stadium experience.

Overall, we feel it’s a great deal that benefits both sides. In fact, we’re so excited by it that we’re now negotiating for naming rights for several other highly prominent local bathrooms. Stay tuned!
With thinking like this, we can’t fail to wipe up!


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