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In looking over some of the numbers touted by the Mayor and baseball team owner Billy Prim I think I may need to go back to school to learn exactly how they came up with the numbers they say will pay off the stadium’s $40 MILLION DOLLAR price tag.

According to the parties involved they will be able to pay off the stadium loans, which Winston-Salem signed for, in 25 years based on an average attendance of 300,000 per season. Now where this goes south pretty fast is just how does Prim think he is going to get those 4,300 fans per game when on average they have less than 700 showing up to see the Dash so far this year? Even if you discount the lack of enthusiasm for their current ballpark last year’s average game attendance was a mere 2,500. Just where does Prim and Mayor Joines think they are going to get another 1,800 bodies to fill those seats? Of course the city officials touted Greensboro as an example of projected numbers and sales however I think we all know Greensboro is a totally different market than Winston-Salem.

Greensboro Winston-Salem
Population: 223,891 185,776
Average Age: 33 34.6
Household Income: $39,661 $37,006
College Education: 33.9% 30.3%
2008 Fans In Seats (Avg.) 6,297 2,575
2009 Fans In Seats (Avg.) 349

imageAccording to The Biz of Baseball out of 82 teams in Class A Baseball only 16 teams drew an average 4,286 fans. The yearly growth in attendance at the former Warthogs games was around 135 fans, roughly 5.5% growth, yet now with a new stadium they expect to see that growth rate jump some 70%? Of course that number is based on the 2008 attendance not the current average of less than 350 fans showing up in 2009.

Oh and by the way this new stadium with a price tag of $40.1 MILLION DOLLARS is the most expensive Class A stadium built, more than $6 million over the second most expensive stadium and on par with Triple A teams like Columbus which on average seat 10,000 fans, almost double what the Winston-Salem Bailout Stadium will seat!

So look out North Carolina our “fuzzy math” Mayor has just been appointed Chairman of the State Economic Advisory Board which advises the NC Department of Commerce on such things as Tax Incentives for businesses and I think we all see how well that has worked.

Sources: Journal Now, The Biz of Baseball, and The American Chronicle

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