I don’t usually use this blog to discuss anything other than how to blog, advice on blogging, or tech news of some sort. Last week, though, I participated in a marketing outreach program by One2One Network and the WNBA by attending a Tulsa Shock basketball game with my family. It was so much more than we expected that I wanted to share it with you here so you can take advantage of the opportunity for a fun night out yourself! (I have a discount code for you at the end of this article so you can save on WNBA tickets!)
People who know me know I’m not a sports fan (although I married a man who loves sports to his very core, so I can tolerate having it on TV if I’m in another room). So I wasn’t surprised when I started tweeting and Twitpic’g my adventure and people responded with, “WHAT? You’re at a sporting event? It’s like I don’t even know you any more.” And really, it’s true. Sports don’t appeal to me. So when @BarbaraJones contacted me to see if I wanted to attend a Shock game, I said yes only because a) I have a policy that I always say yes to Barbara because I love her and b) my husband really wanted to check out a game and I love him and like to make him happy. When we got there, though, I had caught the fever and was enjoying myself like a regular sports fan!
The WNBA Tulsa Shock Fun
You know what I love most about live sporting events? A good mascot. Not just someone in a suit pretending to steal your hat. A good mascot is one who makes you forget there’s a guy in a suit trying to steal your hat and then makes you laugh. And Volt, the Shock’s mascot, delivers. He’s constantly moving and interacting with the crowd.
When they introduced the Minnesota Lynx, he brought out his cot and took a nap:
The Shock marketing team kept the audience entertained by offering several giveaways: tagged seats with prizes, a parachute drop with prizes, a huge t-shirt gun shooting shirts into the audience (and a few times Volt threw the shirts himself — he has quite the arm!)
See the seats with yellow tags? Those tags alert you that you’ve won a prize of some sort (the ones I saw had dollar signs on them & some of those dollar signs were followed by numbers like 200). So, you know, buy a ticket, maybe win money. Not bad.
My whole family had a great time. The game was fast-paced and the ladies played hard. They were definitely there to win (and we did!). There were so many opportunities to meet the players, too! They have autograph sessions after the games and people line up after the game to give high-fives to the team. I noticed that many of the Shock team members were stopping right there to sign things or shake hands.
To those of you who, like me, may not be huge sports fans, I’m here to tell you: if you have a WNBA team in your area, you need to go check it out. It was so much fun! We had a great time, laughed a lot, cheered a lot, and generally got our game on.
The WNBA Shock Venu: BOK Arena
Oklahoma is a late bloomer when it comes to professional sports. Until recently, we haven’t had a lot of options. When Katrina hit, though, Oklahoma City offered to host the NBA Hornets and they agreed. Oklahoma got a taste of what professional sports can be to the community. Professional sports means more money for the local economy, more options for families who want a night out, and, frankly, FUN. We finally see what we’ve been missing. So, after the Hornets returned to their NOLA home, Oklahoma stepped up and recruited some professional teams of our own. We now have the Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA) and the Tulsa Shock (WNBA)!
The BOK Arena (where the Shock games are played) is beautiful and spacious; there’s plenty of room to accommodate fans. You can even plan to have dinner at the arena. You can get a family meal deal for $39 that includes 4 hotdogs, 4 drinks, and a large popcorn! (That’s cheaper than going to the movies and getting snacks, y’all, and this is way more fun because you can talk and interact with your family.) If you’re in the mood for a great burger, Billy’s (from On The Square fame) has a place, as does Pizza Hut. If you’re more interested in regular concession fare, you can get popcorn, pretzels, sodas, and even shaved ice (among a plethora of other things). If you’re a fan of real beer (here in Oklahoma, we have 3.2 and anything above requires a liquor license; consequently, sometimes we don’t have the option to purchase delicious beer like Sam Adams) or want a mixed drink, the BOK Arena can fix you right up.
Apparently, Volt also likes real beer:
The WNBA Shock Ticket Discount
You’ll notice in my pictures there are plenty of open seats. That’s the one thing I couldn’t understand: the arena was not packed. In fact, there were fewer people here than at an OSU basketball game and that ain’t right. These women are putting on a heck of a show and playing their hearts out. The vibe in the arena is high-energy and fun. Volt, the Shock mascot, is working it hard to get people to make some noise and get into the game. And that’s hard to do when you don’t have a house full of fans. So listen up, Oklahoma (and, truly, any state hosting a professional team): We’ve gone a long time without a professional team of any sort and we don’t want to blow this chance. If we want more business in our state, we need to show that we can support it. Get yourself to a Shock game (or even a Thunder game if you’re in the OKC area and can’t travel to Tulsa). The WNBA is even making it easy for you with some ticket discounts:
- $10 tickets are discounted to $8
- $19 tickets are discounted to $12
- $25 tickets are discounted to $15
- $55 tickets are discounted to $30
- $60 tickets are discounted to $35
To take advantage of those deals, just head over to http://bit.ly/WNBAShockTix and enter code WNBABLOG. Not in the Tulsa area, but have a different WNBA franchise close to you? No problem! Each WNBA venue has it’s own deals so the WNBABLOG code will work for you too! Note that you’ll need to create an account to get the deal. Just enter your e-mail address and I password and voila! Take advantage of discounted family fun. If you’re traveling this summer, check to see if your destination has a WNBA team nearby. It would make a great addition to your vacation plans!
More Shock Info
Disclosure: One2One Network and WNBA arranged for me to have four tickets to a basketball game and sent my family t-shirts to wear to the game. They asked me to blog about my experience. While I could have blogged about it at my personal blog (where I rarely post, but have a few loyal readers) and met my obligations, I chose to write about it here because I really thought it was a fun night for our family and I wanted you to be sure and see the opportunity and the discount code.