Many aspects of people’s lives have been affected by COVID-19. Things we took for granted, including spending time with loved ones, having get-togethers with friends, and going to watch your favorite team play all have a sort of nostalgia to them now.
The good news is that sports are inevitably on their way back. And when we do return to play and are able to welcome fans back into our home, please know that health and safety remain the top priority at both the team and league levels.
The San Jose Earthquakes, as with other professional and collegiate sports teams, have been handed the unique challenge of keeping fans engaged during this staggering period of unrest. In addition to creating new content and repurposing archived photos and videos, the Quakes even orchestrated a wonderful 54-minute documentary on the team’s origins back in 1974.
However, the piece that was clearly missing is the face-to-face interaction with the club’s most loyal and dedicated fans. And while we can’t quite replicate the feeling of a 95th-minute Oswaldo Alanis wondergoal, or the smell of food trucks wafting through the stadium, interpersonal interaction with the players and coaches would surely go a long way towards feeling… well, normal.
The Earthquakes launched an initiative a few years back called Devotion Days that was predicated on season ticket holders getting unique experiences on matchday. Those experiences could be anything from a guided press box or trophy room tour, an opportunity to talk to executives, postgame on-field photo opportunities, and more. Despite the absence of live games, the Earthquakes decided to keep those benefits alive and well through Digital Devotion Days launched back in March.
Digital Devotion Days are video chats organized by the front office to allow season ticket holders to interact with players and coaches. And what’s made these so exciting and fun to be a part of is the uniqueness of them. The very first one, held back on March 31, was a simple Q&A session with defender and fan favorite Tommy Thompson. Since then, Quakes fans have experienced a ‘yoga night’ with goalkeeper Matt Bersano, a ‘wine night’ with general manager Jesse Fioranelli, a ‘tequila tasting’ with goalkeeper Daniel Vega, and a ‘hangout’ with club legends Chris Wondolowski, Steven Lenhart and Alan Gordon. Fourteen Digital Devotion Days have been completed with several more on the docket.
The Quakes’ efforts have been amplified thanks to the contributions of many team partners. Intermedia, whose branding can be seen on the club’s two kits in 2020, has provided the steady platform in which these video chat have taken place. Addtionally, el Jimador Tequila provided the necessary beverages for the tequila-tasting event on April 30. Fans who RSVP’d were shocked to received three full 750ml bottles, one for each of el Jimador’s three most popular styles. It’s no wonder that 100% of people who signed up showed up.
The Earthquakes are thankful for their loyal fans and partners and can’t wait to see you at Earthquakes Stadium again soon.