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Thread: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

  1. #1
    Member PR07's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Currently, I'm an intern for the Indiana Pacers. I've been asked to explore ways to improve or generate excitement for this year's Pacers' Fan Jam that is held annually in October as a way for the fans to come in and just have a good time and get to know some of the players. I've never been to the event myself, but if anyone has any suggestions or things that they would like to see done or done differently this year, I'd really like to hear your suggestions. Attendance has kind of dwindled over the years, so they are looking for ways to generate some more interest. Thanks.

    -PR07

  2. #2
    Wasting Light Hicks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    My interest dropped like a rock when they stopped having a scrimmage. The excitement for me was to see the latest Pacer roster in action, five on five, to get a feel for the new guys and any possible changes in the returning players.

    The rest is just fluff to me.

    I will say trying to have interviews at mid-court, IMO, didn't work and just killed the energy. Having Mark Boyle interview Oscar Robertson? Great idea.

    Having him do so at the Fan Jam? Bad idea. It's just not the right time/place IMO.

    Having the team/fans interact on the court with games was kind of fun to watch (not so much the Simon Says, but rather when it was something where one Pacer and one fan teamed up to try to hit shots/layups/3's or whatever; something basketball related).

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    I agree with Hicks on the scrimmage.

    I do believe they should get rid of the Simon Says guy. He's been there the past two years at least and he is not that entertaining.

    Fans and the players playing knockout is actually pretty entertaining.

    Have the players watch and/or maybe coach a local celebrity scrimmage. Score keep, coach, spectate, etc.

    I think the best advice I can give you is have the players and the fans blend in together. Make the fans believe that these guys are not just over-paid babies.

    After all, I think what you should do is look at some of the other teams that hold an open house before the season starts and look at what they do. Don't necessarily steal their ideas, but see if you can improve on their ideas.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    • Bring back the scrimmage. As Hicks says, that's the best thing of all.
    • Minimized the fans' time on the court. I want to see the players.
    • Stop the singing, unless a player really can sing well and wants to do a good job of it.
    • If you want to have giveaways, let a player shoot a difficult shot in order to win a prize for a fan.
    • Let the coach introduce each player, and tell what his role is going to be.
    • Let each player make a prediction about his season's accomplishment ("I'll average 8 rebounds per game." "I'll guard Derrick Rose and hold him to single digits at least once this season." "I'll score 40 points at least once this year." Stuff like that.
    • Keep the photos and autographs for after the event. I hate that but some people like it.
    And I won't be here to see the day
    It all dries up and blows away
    I'd hang around just to see
    But they never had much use for me
    In Levelland. (James McMurtry)

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  6. #5

    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    What would make me come: former Pacers players.

    I'd be more likely to come if former Pacers players (such as Reggie, Rik, Mark Jackson, Mullin, Perkins, McKey -- anyone pre-2006, basically) were there doing something -- telling stories, signing autographs, etc. What would definitely get me to come is former Pacers players playing a pickup game -- either against themselves or versus current Pacers (or a combo of the two) or, even better, against old Knicks rivals from the 1990s. I don't know. I'm nostalgic, and stuff like that would interest me.

    Heck, get Larry Bird on the court to shoot HORSE or do a 3-point contest.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Incorporate a showing of "Winning Time", or at least part of it, into the festivities.

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    Member PR07's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Appreciate the input guys, keep them coming. When I was first told of this task, my first question was, "Have they ever done a navy vs. gold game?" My supervisor said yes, and made it sound like they were really looking for something outside the box.

    I thought that maybe the Pacers could have one lucky fan (kind of like Wonka's Golden Ticket), be the Pacers '15th man' for a day and get to hang out with the team almost like he or she was one of the players {to an extent of course}.

    I also thought of maybe having a players' slam dunk contest. It would be kind of cool to see Dahntay Jones vs. McRoberts throwing down.
    Last edited by PR07; 05-26-2010 at 06:33 PM.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    less fans activities on the court, more player activities on the court. i'm sorry, but i'm only there to see and meet the players, not bet on which little kid will win 'simon says'

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  12. #9
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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by MSA2CF View Post
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    What would make me come: former Pacers players.

    I'd be more likely to come if former Pacers players (such as Reggie, Rik, Mark Jackson, Mullin, Perkins, McKey -- anyone pre-2006, basically) were there doing something -- telling stories, signing autographs, etc. What would definitely get me to come is former Pacers players playing a pickup game -- either against themselves or versus current Pacers (or a combo of the two) or, even better, against old Knicks rivals from the 1990s. I don't know. I'm nostalgic, and stuff like that would interest me.

    Heck, get Larry Bird on the court to shoot HORSE or do a 3-point contest.
    Old School/New School! I'd love to see the Pacers legends against the current squad!

  13. #10

    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Be careful with the "fun games" too..

    We just had an injury in a non NBA game. And I've personally seen injuries (Female basketball player pretty much out for the entire season during Midnight Madness) happen because of stupid little games. No one wants that to happen, so limit it. (Which is I'm sure part of the reason the scrimmage was removed)

    Three point contest, maybe (Obrien would love that)

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Here's my suggestions:

    1) Bring back a few more former Pacers players and maybe have a few more WNBA players there (like maybe 3-4 Fever players)

    2) Make the autograph session longer. I would like it to be changed to at least an hour and a half or if possible and at the latest, 2 hours long. The point is for everybody to meet each player on the team, but it just isn't possible for most people to be able to get around to each player's table with the long lines and all the walking from place to place.

    3) This goes with suggestion #2...maybe have the team line up altogether in the practice gym at a big long line of tables during the autograph sessions...I believe that it would be a lot easier that way, both for the fans and the players. Or if not on the practice court, maybe on the concourse of the balcony level or something like that. I think it would just be a whole lot easier if all the players would be altogether at the autograph session, and just have 1 huge line for everybody to stand in to get the players' autographs. Just an idea though, and I don't know how many other people would be in favor of this other than me, but I think it would work.

    4) Maybe let the rookies on the team know ahead of time they'll be doing a rookie orientation activity during the Fan Jam for the fans, and give them some time to figure out what song they want to perform and such. Last year's Fan Jam was just pretty sad, especially with Hansbrough lmao.

    I'll add anything else later on if I can think of anything. Thanks for letting the fans have some input!!

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by PR07 View Post
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    Appreciate the input guys, keep them coming. When I was first told of this task, my first question was, "Have they ever done a navy vs. gold game?" My supervisor said yes, and made it sound like they were really looking for something outside the box.

    I thought that maybe the Pacers could have one lucky fan (kind of like Wonka's Golden Ticket), be the Pacers '15th man' for a day and get to hang out with the team almost like he or she was one of the players {to an extent of course}.

    I also thought of maybe having a players' slam dunk contest. It would be kind of cool to see Dahntay Jones vs. McRoberts throwing down.
    YES!!!!! I'd really like a dunk contest. McBob vs. Dahntay would be awesome!!

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    I like the idea of bringing in old players, as well. Have a 3 point contest, with the winner facing Bird or Reggie in the Finals. I would definitely be interested in seeing that.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Bring the scrimmage back DEFINITELY. I like the idea of the golden ticket, maybe a pair of season tickets to the winner, or something for the STH's like maybe free concessions for the season. Fan Jam should be about the fans getting to meet their favorite players and introducing them to the new players so the autograph session should make it likely to get to meet them. Setting up tables in the practice gym would be a good idea along with around the fieldhouse as usual. Open up the locker rooms for the fans to tour. I used to take my family every year but stopped after the 2008 jam because the excitement was LONG gone mostly due to the scrimmage being cancelled.

    Indyhoosier

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    sweabs
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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    As an outsider who is unfamiliar with Fan Jam, I have no idea what the event has typically entailed and sought to achieve in the past. So I apologize if this idea is either rehashed or horribly misguided based upon Fan Jam's history and/or overall philosophy.

    With that caveat out of the way, has Fan Jam ever tried to emulate a "real" practice? It seems to me that a large majority of the Indiana fanbase would appreciate an experience that allowed each individual the opportunity to witness an "authentic" NBA practice and/or day at training camp. Personally, I think a shift away from the "gimmicky" stuff might work best. I think fans might enjoy watching and dissecting the coach's drills while hearing him yell at, and praise the players who are out there working. Also, recognizing the fact that this is likely geared towards families, I think a lot of parents would relish the opportunity to have their children watch Danny Granger and Tyler Hansbrough out there working on the fundamentals and perfecting their skills (i.e. the same sorts of practice routines these children are likely exposed to).

    I'm not saying to scrap all of the "fun" stuff entirely. Surely there can be some time at the end dedicated to those sorts of things. But I think having the opportunity to watch a "legitimate" NBA practice would be seen as the most entertaining (and educational) component of all.
    Last edited by sweabs; 05-26-2010 at 09:29 PM.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Jim O'Brien in a dunk tank.

    In fact if you charged $1.00 for each ball thrown you could probably erase the Pacers loss margin in a single day.


    Basketball isn't played with computers, spreadsheets, and simulations. ChicagoJ 4/21/13

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Have a raffle for a pair of season tickets.


    EDIT: Scratch that, I agree with Peck. Jim O'Brien in a dunk tank. $1.00 a ball. Think of the profits.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    In all seriousness though the problem with fan jam is who are you really trying to reach out there. Are you trying to get the family atmosphere, which they have for several years now, which will hold zero interest for someone like Uncle Buck or me.

    Or are you trying to reach the die hard Pacers basketball fan, which would hold zero interest for young kids and most likely drive away the family atmosphere.

    Merging the two sounds good, but it's harder than it sounds.

    But if you did want to try and reach both here is a suggestion.

    Gold vs Blue without this you will draw zero interest from anyone who wants to go see the players.

    Dunk contest is a great idea and this might be good enough to be one of those both worlds merging events. I know I would like to see this.

    3 point contest, while I puke at the thought of three point shots anymore this still might have some entertainment value.

    BTW, notice a trend with the above? All of them have to do with the actual game of basketball being played.

    Either way though I am sure you won't have an event like when the Pacers let the public in for one of Larry Browns practices.

    Even I learned new curse words that day.


    Basketball isn't played with computers, spreadsheets, and simulations. ChicagoJ 4/21/13

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
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    Jim O'Brien in a dunk tank.

    In fact if you charged $1.00 for each ball thrown you could probably erase the Pacers loss margin in a single day.
    I don't think I would be able to take part in that competition. When I'd go to throw the ball, I might "forget" what I'm supposed to be aiming at.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
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    Jim O'Brien in a dunk tank.

    In fact if you charged $1.00 for each ball thrown you could probably erase the Pacers loss margin in a single day.
    I might just have to fly in to Indianapolis for that event!

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
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    Jim O'Brien in a dunk tank.

    In fact if you charged $1.00 for each ball thrown you could probably erase the Pacers loss margin in a single day.

    hell yeah! great idea! I wasn't planning on going but I certainly would drive down to Indy for that.

    I'd like to see a scrimmage too, maybe a Fever vs Pacers scrimmage, except the Fever would probably win the game... that would be awkward...

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by HeartlandFan View Post
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    I like the idea of bringing in old players, as well. Have a 3 point contest, with the winner facing Bird or Reggie in the Finals. I would definitely be interested in seeing that.

    Take this idea a step further. Although i hate the all star game, i like the events surrounding it. Of course a dunk contest would be awesome, and the 3 point contest would be awesome. But to bring one old player, one fever player and a current player.

    Who wouldnt want to see a game of Danny, Catchings, and Derrick mckey take on DunDun, Reggie and Katie Douglas. Of course that would be wishful thinking getting Reggie back in the house he built. The building would be full just to see him alone. I think you might get Rik to do this.

  31. #23
    Administrator Roaming Gnome's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by PR07 View Post
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    Appreciate the input guys, keep them coming. When I was first told of this task, my first question was, "Have they ever done a navy vs. gold game?" My supervisor said yes, and made it sound like they were really looking for something outside the box.

    I thought that maybe the Pacers could have one lucky fan (kind of like Wonka's Golden Ticket), be the Pacers '15th man' for a day and get to hang out with the team almost like he or she was one of the players {to an extent of course}.

    I also thought of maybe having a players' slam dunk contest. It would be kind of cool to see Dahntay Jones vs. McRoberts throwing down.
    That is my problem... The more they get "outside the box" the more they seem to get away from Basketball and the concept of meeting the "basketball team"!

    I wrote this at the end of March concerning fan jam and something else that can be done.
    Quote Originally Posted by Roaming Gnome
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    Between thinking about the Colts training camp and the open invitation to Lucas Oil Stadium to see the Final 4 teams practice on Friday just kind of gave me an idea. I would like the Pacers to have one of their 2 hour practice sessions towards the beginning of training camp open to the public.

    I know that the Pacers have the "Fan Jam" but, I'd like to see something that would be geared towards the more mature fans that would like to hear and see the coach run some drills and maybe have a light scrimmage in front of fans that are interested. Maybe even go as far as having coaches and team captains mic'd up. This wouldn't be a P.R. production about getting the fans hyped up and kids screaming or shooting T-shirts, but just practice that was open to the public. I see it as a good way to actually get to watch the training camp invites work hard for a roster spot and the vets go through things that we just don't see everyday, but the stuff that makes them better. I also see it as a way to show what the coaching staff does to prep the players for the season.

    If done correctly, I think this would be better for fans like myself that have grown just weary of Fan Jam because its just about PR and not about basketball. You could brand it off as, "Pacers: Real Training Camp" like the show featured on NBA TV. I'd still keep Fan Jam as a way to introduce the team and have that party atmosphere but the Real Training Camp would be what you'd attend to see the scrimmage and drills and maybe see something that isn't all about hype.
    ...Still "flying casual"
    @roaminggnome74

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    Quote Originally Posted by Sookie View Post
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    Be careful with the "fun games" too..

    We just had an injury in a non NBA game. And I've personally seen injuries (Female basketball player pretty much out for the entire season during Midnight Madness) happen because of stupid little games. No one wants that to happen, so limit it. (Which is I'm sure part of the reason the scrimmage was removed)
    Maybe they should just eliminate actual practices too. I understand what you're saying, but it's not like these guys are made of glass and can break at any moment. Do freak accidents happen like AJ going down? Of course. But that's also why they're called "freak accidents."

    Practices during training camp and even during the season are going to be waaaaay more potentionally harmful then having a scrimmage at fan jam. Which is my idea. Have an actual hr and a half practice, then have fan meet and great for the next hour or so. We went down to the Final Four practices this year, and I thought watching Duke's compared to the rest of the teams showed a lot. Really impressive, IMHO.

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    Default Re: Suggestions for Pacers' Fan Jam

    A trampoline dunk contest between the power pack. A three on three tourney 1 Pacer 1 fever and 1 legend


    @Pacers24Colts12

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