Brad Eaton is the vice president of corporate partnerships.
“As a sports team, we’ve always had this understanding that we’re a unique kind of business, and we’re a business that is more involved with the community who are our fan base than probably most, so we have a different level of a need to give back,” Eaton said.
They work with organizations across the Miami Valley through programs like Dragons MVP, where players work with students in more than 1,200 classes across the region, and Hometown Heroes, where they honor local veterans.
“We just want to be that megaphone and be able to champion those causes and those great organizations that are doing the right things each and every day,” Brandy Guinaugh, Dayton Dragons vice president and assistant general manager, said.
This season, the Dragons are partnering with Culture Works, an organization that supports the arts in the Miami Valley. They will be helping to raise money and showcase everything Culture Works does to advance the arts in the community.
“Maybe if they haven’t gone to the theater or they are not familiar, they’ll start to get a better understanding of what these organizations do and why they’re so important to the community. That’s kind of the beauty when you can bring 8,000 people here, you can expose them to stuff that maybe they haven’t been exposed to before,” Eaton said.
It is not just the community that benefits from these initiatives. The players themselves also learn valuable lessons during their time in Dayton.
“They can see that hey each one of these communities that they live in has its own unique infrastructure and its community that needs supporting and needs things to have a spotlight shown on them and need to be lifted up. So they need to understand those are the kinds of things that are important for them to support, even though they might only be a temporary resident of that community for a season or two,” Eaton said.
The Dayton Dragons are providing more than just baseball.
“A sports team has a unique ability to really shed that light and spotlight and shine in a unique way, and help others gain interest and volunteers, and financial help, and whatever that need might be. And so we take that very seriously as a responsibility of ours and we look forward to doing that each and every season for our fans,” Guinaugh said.
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