The Fight for the Drillers

Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor didn’t hesitated to make her pitch that the Tulsa’s Drillers baseball team should be playing their games downtown.
When it was announced in August the Drillers had signed a non-binding agreement with River District Development Group LLC that would move the Tulsa club to a new ballpark in Jenks, the mayor promptly brought one high and inside — sending out an e-mail to everyone on her distribution list — encouraging Tulsans to contact Drillers owner Chuck Lamson.
“Subject: Drillers and Downtown Tulsa,” the e-mail read.
“Dear Friend, Tulsa wants the Drillers to move Downtown, and we need to let the Drillers know how much. Downtown ballparks are a proven success in city after city for economic vitality and vibrant city centers. Please contact Chuck Lamson to let him know how much Tulsans appreciate them, and that we want the Drillers in Downtown Tulsa!
Please forward this e-mail to friends and family.
Thank You,
Kathy Taylor, Mayor”
“Yeah, I got some response,” Lamson said when asked if he was aware of the e-mail. “I got quite a few calls, as well as several hundred e-mails.”
Lamson did not give an exact number. And, Lamson doesn’t accuse Taylor of playing hardball.
“That’s great,” he said. “The only thing I would say is that it got people thinking about the issue, which is good, and I hope they expressed what is their own opinion on the issue as opposed to a knee-jerk reaction.”
While some of the responses were from people who thought a move to Jenks would be a good idea and others who thought the Drillers should stay at the Tulsa County Fairgrounds, “obviously, a majority reacting to that e-mail said we should look at moving downtown,” Lamson said.
“I appreciate that because it is always good information to hear from people who may or may not have been to our games – and what their feelings are about it,” he said.



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