Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Bathroom Tale - My Fenway Family Tour compliments of F.W. Webb

That moment when your little girl's gotta go and it's just her and her dad watching the Red Sox crush the Yankees at Fenway.
jamero marketing, red sox, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kids

We've all been there, right?

jamero marketing, red sox, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kidsIn fact, I remember having this very conversation with my husband upon the news that our baby-on-the-way would be of the pink persuasion. It went something like this:

Ryan: I can't believe I'm gonna have a daughter! My little girl. I can't wait for daddy/daughter days out.
Me: I know! But you realize that means a whole new bunch of stuff you'll have to deal with.
Ryan: Like what?
Me: Like how do you handle changing a diaper or potty training if you're alone with her. Say, at the mall for a movie?
Ryan: I'd just ask some nice lady to bring her in to the bathroom for me.
Me: WHAT?!?!??!?

Sound familiar? The whole "always on duty for the parent of like gender" deal gets way old way fast. I admit, it's caused a few "I'd really like to be able to watch the whole movie/eat the meal hot/not miss another homer" battles in our 10 years with this girl child. All mine. GRRRRRR....

jamero marketing, red sox, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kidsSo although it DOES sound like an unusual motivation to go and take a tour of the  Red Sox home stadium by-way-of-potty, it does make sense that the folks at F.W. Webb and Frank Webb Retail Bath Centers would reach out to mom bloggers to spread the word about this improvement at the park.

For those who aren't familiar with F.W.Webb, and presumably many of my readers aren't unless they are married to a plumber, the company provides B2B plumbing supplies in their F.W Webb side but has also opened up the retail arm Frank Webb Bath Centers to provide B2C home furnishings to the consumer market. We have one in our town. It's beautiful stuff if you're looking to remodel your kitchen or bath.

But why a potty tour of Fenway? F.W. Webb is a
jamero marketing, red sox, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kidsBoston-born family company and a huge sponsor of the Sox and the park. They are invested in making this venue and their commitment to it a better place for future Sox fans and their moms and dads. Hence the awesome hands-free, open concept (save the privy), well appointed, kid-friendly restrooms they've recently renovated. They're environmentally responsible, water saving, germ-battling hands free spaces that will surely save more than a few angrily whispered battles in the grand stand about why do I always have to schlep the little darling through the beer line and across the park to do the do while you relax over a sports bar in peace. I'm all in.
jamero marketing, red sox, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kids
jamero marketing, red sox, restrooms, fenway park, fw webb, jimmy fund, yawkey way, boston, family, tours, travel, kidsHere's a little bit about the F.W.Webb/Red Sox

Nation relationship and some sweet shots of the super duper hoppers.

“For seven years, F.W. Webb has been a tremendous partner, and we are thrilled to build upon our relationship with the renovation of the family restrooms,” Red Sox Senior Vice President of Corporate Partnerships Troup Parkinson said. “It’s a great brand marriage to have one of the oldest companies in New England involved in enhancing the oldest operating ballpark in Major League Baseball. The family restroom renovations with F.W. Webb are just the latest example of the work that has taken place over the past 11 years to enhance Fenway Park and improve the fan experience.”

“The family restroom renovations provide easy access to the facilities for families of young children as well as physically challenged individuals,” said Jeff Pope, president, F.W. Webb. “These renovations will not only add to the comfort and aesthetics of the family restrooms, the fixtures will also help conserve water, reduce energy use, and provide a cleaner, more sanitary bathroom for fans through hands-free operation. As a family-oriented company, we’re pleased to be involved with Fenway Park in this unique way.”

And now for some Fenway Tour Facts peppered with some potty talk:

The park opened in 1912 and is the oldest major league ballpark in the US currently in operation. The Chicago Cub's Wrigley Field followed shortly thereafter in 1914 and no more parks were built till at least another 30 years had passed.

The seats in the grandstand are the original seats that were installed in 1912.

The one red seat among the blue in the grandstands signals the longest "in park" home run in MLB history. The gentleman sitting in the seat when it was his was not harmed though his large sun-shading star hat both kept him from seeing the ball coming his way and sustained a clear hole through the middle from the blow. His photo in the Boston Globe the next day shows him holding up the hat. The caption, "BULLSEYE".

There was no 3rd floor Ladies' room in the original expansion of the park until a female architect identified the oversight. It has since been resolved.

The Red Sox pet charity, "The Jimmy Fund" was begun while the Boston Braves still took the field at Fenway. The Jimmy Fund was created to help raise money for care for a seriously ill 12 year old, it has grown into a national organization that assists in securing much needed medical funding for thousands of sick children.

The iconic child in the Jimmy Fund ads is not a Jimmy or even a James. The boy is actually Einar Gustavson from Vermont. He was in fact ill, and did live a longer, fuller life as the result of the organizations continued stewardship of the organization. At no time was his nickname Jimmy.The Red Sox and the Jimmy Fund are celebrating their 60th year working together and offering a commemorate license plate to raise funds and awareness for this important cause. Link to more info here. Jimmy Fund Red Sox Plates

The F.W. Webb's "Tom Brady Toilet" has become it's best high-end seller since New England Patriot's Quarterback Tom Brady purchased five of them for his new home with model Giselle. The "mack daddy" of all potties, it has both a washing AND a drying feature, is 100% hands free and can be programmed to play music. How's that for a throne?

The notorious "Green Monster" was not an original feature of the ballpark nor was it green. The low blue wall at the rear of center field was covered in distracting advertising for everything from depilatories to whiskey. Aside from being a distraction for the boys at the plate and a nuisance to the car dealers who line the street below, the wall provided no protection from rooftop game watchers sneaking a peak without buying a ticket. The larger green wall resolved all of these issue.

Green Monster seats, recently installed and after much debate from both a purist and a desirability perspective were originally priced at a mere $50pp. Their unforeseen popularity quickly resulted in the installation of an online "lottery" for GM seats.

I'd keep going, but then you'd miss out on going there to hear it for yourself. And I gotta say, our guide, Joe was hilarious and worth a request. His specialized tour was, ahem, something of a break from the norm but his commentary flowed (pun intended) freely and we had a lot of laughs.. It takes skill to successfully juxtapose Fenway Factoids with Plumbing Points. Bravo.

For more Fenway Facts and to take the tour yourself, I'd click here. It was a really great trip.
I'd like to thank the folks at F.W. Webb, their PR consultant Kevin from PAN and the facilities manager Mike for the invitation and the tour. All were a delight to meet and chat with, even IF most of our talking was done in a room normally reserved for quickness and quiet.

The other mommy bloggers I met were super cool and real and having as hearty a laugh about our unusual angle and how we'd write this post up as I was. I'm looking forward to reading their articles. P.S. you'll notice they've been added to my blog roll over there -------->

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