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Tunnel Vision: Behind the Scenes at the Norfolk Tides

It’s Thursday, April 11th, the spring sunshine is setting and the Norfolk Tides are ready to play ball at their first home stand of the 2019 season at Harbor Park. Being an avid baseball fan, I was bound to catch the Norfolk Tides take the field for their home opener.

Over the past few years, Virginia Eye Consultants has cultivated a strong and meaningful partnership with the Tides organization. One of the many creative concepts we’ve cooked up together was the creation of three mascots in the form of giant eyeballs who take the field every home game at the end of the 7th inning to race around the bases.  Their names are Sierra (green eye), Blinky (blue eye) and Einstein (brown eye).

I had the chance to walk through the tunnels below the stadium to get a peek at where the racing eyes reside. It was like a maze pacing through the tunnels to get to the action, but also a fun experience to learn what goes on beneath the crowd. As I finally approached eyeball territory, I had a few minutes to observe them gear up before jetting out onto the field to race around the bases. It was a really awesome experience and I’m glad to have snapped a few photos for keepsakes.

Fast forward to a month later and I’m back at the Norfolk Tides to catch them playing against the Buffalo Bisons, a team I have some family ties with. My uncle, Jeff Ware, a former starting pitcher of the Toronto Blue Jays, is pitching coordinator for their organization. Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place on who to root for! It’s rare you get to watch your local home team play against one of your family member’s teams, but it was one that our whole family got to come out to and enjoy.

Digging deeper into the ties with the Buffalo Bisons, a good buddy and co-worker of mine, DJ, is from Buffalo. We were able to set up a quick meet and greet between DJ and my Uncle Jeff before the start of the game.

It was a win-win for everyone!

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