April 30, 2009
What's Next... Sponsoring Rivers and Runs?
By Kirk Deeter
So I'm watching the basketball playoffs the other day, and notice that the parquet floor isn't at Boston Garden anymore. Oh, the floor is there, it's just not Boston Garden. It's "TD Banknorth Garden." Wah? Might as well be "Mrs. Butterworth's Garden." I mean, enough with this corporate arena/stadium sponsorship stuff already.
I'll admit some corporate names work when they're tied to people and companies that make the sports franchises/cities what they are: Ford Field in Detroit, Coors Field in Denver, Turner Field in Atlanta... fine. But other company stadium names fall flat. Fed Ex Field in Washington. Lame. Invesco Field at Mile High. An insult. The Wachovia Center in Philly... c'mon... it kind of worked years ago when it was the First Union Center, and everyone lovingly called it the "FU" center. That was somehow endearing and appropriate for Philly sports fans.
I started to think more on the topic, however, and I had an epiphany. Maybe the fly fishing world could increase profit and exposure if we somehow did the same thing. Sell sponsorships to re-name major rivers! The Purina Dog Chow Roaring Fork River... The Exxon/Mobil Green River (there might be some interesting ironies like this)... The Home Depot Chattahoochie...
Think about it. We could even sell sposorships for specific runs on rivers: The Field & Stream Family Hole... The Ice Box, brought to you by (who else?) General Electric... The Cialis Wall of Death...
Then again, that might get a little cumbersome for us outdoor writers. "Bob the guide was explaining mysis shrimp techniques in the Toilet Bowl Run, brought to us by Lysol, on the ConAgra Wesson Oil Frying Pan River... or... Joe Cermele brings us a fishing adventure from the godaddy.com Delaware River." Okay, maybe not.
But I'm still interested in any thoughts on other matches of rivers, runs, and company sponsors.