Giveaway Review: Rally Towel (Grade: B+)

Nationals guest services representatives distribute rally towels before the game on April 8, 2015
Nationals guest services representatives distribute rally towels before the game on April 8, 2015

Nats Gallery Blog will periodically review the 2015 Washington Nationals promotions and giveaways.  The promotional schedule was released the second week of February and it generated lots of publicity.  It would be hard for any media outlet to pass up a story on a Jayson Werth Chia Pet!  We still believe that there is still plenty to discuss and we will give the promotions and giveaways letter grades (A-F) based on three criteria–excitement, originality and satisfaction.

All fans in attendance at yesterday’s 2-1 victory over the New York Mets received a rally towel presented by Norfolk Southern.

Red Natiionals rally towel from yesterday's game
Red Nationals rally towel from yesterday’s game

Rally towels are a giveaway that Nationals fans have received most recently during the 2012 and 2014 playoff games.  Who could forget the red #Nattitude towels twirling amid the chaos that erupted after Jayson Werth’s walk off home run in game 4 of the National League Division Series that forced a game 5?

A Nationals email to season ticket holders in 2014 generated a mini frenzy when it was announced the rally towels were white and that fans should wear “plenty of Curly W’s throughout the Postseason.”  Fans preferred the red towels from the 2012 NLDS.  They also wanted more specific directions from the Nationals regarding how they could dress to support the team during the 2014 NLDS.  They received their cue from utility player Kevin Frandsen who told a radio audience that fans should “just wear red.”

Nationals rally towel from the 2012 NLDS
Nationals rally towel from the 2012 NLDS
Nationals rally towel from the 2014 NLDS
Nationals rally towel from the 2014 NLDS

The crowd at last night’s game was much smaller than either of playoff series, but a 56 minute rain delay meant that the most passionate fans were the ones remaining at Nationals Park after the storm moved out of the area.  Fans who took cover in the concourse relocated to the field level seats and they used their rally towels to dry off their new expensive seats.  They were treated to an exciting game, highlighted by a Ryan Zimmerman home run to left field, and they waved their wet towels pretty much all night long.

The smaller turnout at last night’s game can have repercussions.  Fewer fans walked through the gates to get the red towel with the white logo meaning that fewer fans will have them at future games.  It would be nice to hear that the marketing team intends to distribute the extra towels to fans at future games.  Perhaps they can reward an entire section as a random act of nattitude.

This rally towel was distributed on opening day by the Seattle Mariners
This rally towel was distributed on opening day by the Seattle Mariners

One criticism of the giveaway was that it lacked pizzazz.  The towel is relatively plain compared to other rally towels given out this week.  The Detroit Tigers rally towel looks exciting to wave and they have a cool slogan–“Tigers fans lets hear you roar.”  The Mariners rally towel also has an original design.  Their towel paid tribute to “King” Felix Hernandez with its large K and opening day bunting.

Fans were certainly satisfied with the giveaway and last night’s victory gave rally towel waving fans another reason to be happy.

Grade: B+

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