Actually, this year we hope to return to San Diego again as part of our wedding anniversary. The last time we were there, was during Christmas 2011. We took the oppportunity to visit some old friends, old haunts and celebrated the Yutetime season sans Iowa cold and snow.We usually enjoy going during the September – October timeframe, after the tourists are generally gone. We also try to get in at least one Padres game during our visit, so there may be a freebie or two we may get to enjoy during our trip.
This year's giveaways begin with the Opening Series Rally Towels, sponsored by Sycuan Casino. These towels, given out during each night of the initial series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, resemble game jerseys, with the first night featuring a white “jersey” towel, a familiar brown and yellow jersey towel for the second night and the new Navy Camouflage towel on the third.
The giveaways end Sat., Sept. 24 (San Francisco Giants) as the Padres close out their home baseball season with a Padres Team Photo and 2017 Schedule, courtesy of the Mighty 1090 radio station. As a matter of fact, there will be a total of four different fireworks nights this season, as well as a lazer light show.
In between, there’s a whole mess of other Padres goodies to look forward to. As for clothing, on Sat., April 23 (St. Louis Cardinals), Mission Federal Credit Union is giving away a Tyson Ross Jersey T-shirt. On Sat., May 7 (New York Mets), Toyota is giving out a black Padres Hoodie. The final clothing freebie is a Throwback Jersey being offered on Sat., Aug. 6 (Philadelphia Phillies), sponsored by Fanatics.
On Sat., Aug. 20 (Arizona Diamondbacks) fans will actually have a better option than the current presidential election process – namely, a fan’s choice of a Back-to-School San Diego Lunch Bag, or a Back-to-Tailgating Sand Diego Bottle Holder. As far as reusable bags go, that’s yet another giveaway, this one coming on Sat., May 22 (Los Angeles Dodgers), with the issuing of an MLB Network Reusable Bag. However you look at it, it still appears to be a tote bag to me.
Among the most interesting giveaways include San Diego Padres electronics, including a Padres USB Charger on Sat., Sept. 10 (Colorado Rockies) and the Padres Ear Buds being given out on Sat., July 30 (Cincinnati Reds) by United Airlines. There’s also a $10 Coupon to the Padres Majestic Team Store on Sat., July 16 (San Francisco Giants).
Other giveaways include a trifecta from Cox Cable on Sat., April 16 (Arizona Diamondbacks) featuring a Padres Ball Cap, San Diego Decal and a 2016 Schedule Cling; a Padres Pet Calendar, “Padres and Puppies” on Sun., April 24 (St, Louis Cardinals); Knockaround glasses from Knockaround on Fri. June 17 (Washington Nationals); another Padres Fedora, this time a blue one, from National University on Sat., June 18 (Washington Nationals); and a Padres Hall of Fame Coffee Table Book and Pet Bandana, courtesy of Petco on Fri., July 1 (New York Yankees).
By the way, Fox Sports San Diego is providing an unspecified giveaway on my birthday this year, the mysterious "To Be Announced" during the Sat., June 4 game against the Colorado Rockies.
Another interesting facet about this year's promotions are the "Theme Games," which include African American Heritage Night; Sunday Funday; San Diego State University Day; French Heritage Night; Nurses Night; Teacher Appreciation Night; University of San Diego Night; Faith and Family Night; Class of 2016 Night; Pride Night; Dog Days of Summer; University of California San Diego Night; FIlipino Heritage Night; Portugeuse Heritage Night; Zombie Day; USC & UCLA Rivalry Night; Ghostbusters Day; Team USA Day; Game of Thrones Day; Bark at the Park; Japanese Heritage Night; Movie on the Field; Naval Academy Day; Superhero Day; Pac-12 Night (Why not a Mountain West Night?); Polish Heritage Night; PCL 80th Anniversary; Native American Heritage Night; and (finally) Oktoberfest.
Any way you look at it, it should be a great time at PETCO Park this season. Now, I just can't wait to stop "California Dreamin'" and actually get down there again.