Nobody goes to a baseball game for the beer. But many say that enjoying cool brew is a big part of watching America’s pastime.
In Tucson, fans have several options for every game at Tucson Electric Park, home of the Tucson Sidewinders. Plus, special promotions featuring beer and margaritas run every Thursday and Monday home games.
“You know there’s a saying . . . ‘What sells at the (ball)park sells in town,” says Sidewinders owner Jay Zucker, noting that TEP sells more than a dozen of the most popular beers, as well as a limited number of California chardonnays, merlots and cabernets.
TEP sells most of the popular domestic beers, as well as several popular Mexican beers, but also beers from regional brewers such as Fat Tire by Fort Collins, Colo.,’s New Belgium Brewing Co.
The Sidewinders begin the second homestand of their young minor league baseball season Thursday – coincidently with the regular Thirsty Thursday promotion.
On Thirsty Thursday, ‘Winders fans at TEP, 2500 E. Ajo Way, pay only $1 for beer, lemonade and soft drinks during the two hours after the first pitch.
Counting tomorrow, eight Thirsty Thursdays remain, with the last one Aug. 24. This is the third year that Mothers Against Drunk Driving has sponsored the promotion, says Zucker.
He says, “we use it as an opportunity to educate people” about when they’ve had enough to drink and to realize that it’s OK to get a ride home if you’re intoxicated. Designated drivers also get free O’Doul’s nonalcoholic beer or soft drinks.
On occasion, the Sidewinders will “test” beers for a brief time at games, Zucker says.
But Thirsty Thursday is not the only beverage promotion. Seven Margaritaville Mondays are left.
On those promotion dates – the next is May 15 – fans may buy two margaritas for the price of one in TEP’s The Groves area. Corona specials also are offered. Zucker won’t disclose the recipe for the margaritas, but does say there is a “Jimmy Buffett” theme. The singer/entrepreneur has a Margaritaville tequila brand, as well as a margarita mix. Hmmm.
On the Web
Tucson Sidewinders: www.tucsonsidewinders.com
Tucson Electric Park also has a private label champagne available with advance notice for special occasions, such as weddings, at the park.
Tucson Sidewinders owner Jay Zucker says a California winery produces Jay and Melinda’s Private Reserve sparkling wine. He says it has an almond flavor that is uncharacteristically sweet and “very smooth.”
No private label wines or beers are available at the park this year, though in the past such items as Sidewinders Raz beer – which Zucker says he really liked but fans did not, were sold.