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Local News

Joliet Slammers draw August concert, more fans

The newly named DuPage Medical Group Field on Wednesday, May 29, 2019, in downtown Joliet, Ill.
The newly named DuPage Medical Group Field on Wednesday, May 29, 2019, in downtown Joliet, Ill.

The Slammers have slated an August concert for the stadium, the latest in a list of wins for the front office this season.

The baseball team, which manages the city-owned stadium, has been trying to increase its use since the city installed artificial turf in spring 2018.

So far this year the team has brought in 160 events, more than all of 2018, while also putting the Slammers on top for attendance in the Frontier League, said John Wilson, vice president of sales and marketing.

On Aug. 10, the Slammers and 350 Brewing Co. out of Tinley Park will host Slammers Fest, a concert featuring four bands so far and possibly more to come.

Bands announced Wednesday are Everclear, Bowling for Soup, Reel Big Fish and Lights Over Bridgeport.

“We’re excited that we can bring an affordable concert to downtown Joliet. It’s been a long time coming,” Wilson said.

The stadium in past summers has hosted Hopstring Fest, a venue for craft beer and local bands.

Slammers Fest will feature bigger name bands, although not the variety of craft brewers that came to Hopstring Fest.

But bringing a concert to the stadium was one of his goals since coming on last year as marketing executive, Wilson said.

“My three main goals were to get a naming rights deal, to be in the top three in attendance and to get a concert,” Wilson said.

The Slammers last week announced a naming rights deal with DuPage Medical Group to rename the stadium DuPage Medical Group Field. The stadium has not had a corporate naming sponsor since a 15-year agreement with Silver Cross Hospital ended at the end of 2016.

As of Wednesday, the Slammers led the Frontier League in attendance with average attendance of 2,474 per game and total attendance of 19,795.

Wilson said attendance numbers could go up.

“We really start getting busier when school lets out,” he said.

The Slammers last year were near the bottom of the league in attendance even though the team won the Frontier League championship.

The number of events this spring has been boosted by the availability of artificial turf, Wilson said, as a number of high school and college teams moved games to the stadium because their grass fields were washed out.

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