While the traffic cones have been removed and the festivities are over, people are still talking about how awesome the Oakland Marathon was. Baseball Oakland and friends were out in full force that day bright and early, waving A's flags and beating our drums to support Oakland and the runners. Our enthusiasm was not unnoticed, as it was picked up by the Oakland Tribune and this blog.
One may wonder, "What does this mean for the A's?" According to the Tribune, the marathon was a huge success for several downtown Oakland businesses. The Pacific Coast Brewing Company reported doubling its weekend customers. Closer to the proposed ballpark sites near Jack London Square, Kincaid's restaurant reported a $10,000 increase in business. The success of this event proves at least three things:
1. Oakland has the abilities to create and hold large scale events.
2. People from not only Oakland but all over the Bay Area and elsewhere will come to Oakland for events.
3. Good events in Oakland are good for local businesses.
One Yelp.com member, "Mark A.", noted that a new downtown stadium in Oakland would ave a "Pac Bell like" effect on this city. We couldn't agree more. Oaklanders not only used it as a running event, but also as a celebration of Oakland itself. If the Oakland A's owners were to embrace this city, Oaklanders would embrace the team like never before. More pride in baseball = more tickets sold. More tickets sold = more corporate sponsorships and luxury box sales. More people downtown = more customers for local business, and increased revenues for A's ownership.
Its easy. It makes sense. Oakland is a true world class city that has the tools, people, creativity and money to make things happen. If the Oakland Running Festival is any indication of a barometer of future success, the future is pretty bright.