October 24, 2017

NB Bees release 2018 schedule, plan to ramp up sales, promotions

PHOTO | HBJ FILE
PHOTO | HBJ FILE
Brad Smith, New Britain Bees general manager.

The New Britain Bees have released their schedule for the 2018 season, which will include 72 home games at New Britain Stadium, the first one on May 4.

The Bees, which open their season April 24 on the road, hope to improve their record and attendance next season after finishing last in both categories in 2017 in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. Attendance dropped by 20,000 visitors in 2017, which also featured the start of Hartford Yard Goats baseball at the new Dunkin' Donuts Park.

The Bees recently named a new general manager, Brad Smith, who plans to put together a competitive team and strong promotional schedule.

"We need to ramp up season ticket sales and group sales and develop a fun-filled promotional schedule," he said earlier this month. "The worst thing you can do is to be boring."

While the Yard Goats play just up the road, Smith said there are plenty of fans to bring to New Britain, likening the two-team situation here to one in North Carolina where he and has family successfully ran a team that competed with a Triple-AAA franchise 20 miles away.

"We need to execute our business plan perfectly," Smith said earlier. "Even on nights when we go head-to-head with Hartford, they only hold about 6,000 people. There are more than enough fans to fill New Britain Stadium. It is our job to get them here."

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