On Sunday, June 10, the Oakland Athletics are offering free game tickets to individuals who were affected by the deadly Northern California wildfires in 2017.
Last year, the California wildfire season was the most destructive in the state’s history. According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, a total of 9,133 fires burned over one million acres of land. These large fires killed 41 civilians and two firefighters – a toll that comes out to be higher than all the wildfire-related deaths over the past ten years combined. Among the most dangerous of them was the massive Thomas Fire which blew through Ventura County in December, forcing 230,000 people to evacuate as over 300,000 acres of land was burned.
“Following the Northern California fires last fall, we saw that baseball had the ability to provide relief and healing to a community facing such devastation,” Catherine Aker, vice president of communications and community for the A’s, said in a press release. “We immediately took part in relief efforts, and we are proud to continue to help support these communities.”
Their June 10 game will now be dubbed “North Bay Day,” as there will be fundraising opportunities to support North Bay non-profit organizations and honor the first responders and firefighters. Aker described the day as “just another way we can give back to our fans.”
A’s fans will be able to receive two complimentary tickets by visiting athletics.com/northbayday and must show a photo ID with an address in a city affected by the fires on the day of the game when picking up their ticket. Special firefighter appreciation tickets will be available for fans in other communities that would like to attend at athletics.com/firefighters.
The A’s will face the Kansas City Royals at the 1:05 p.m. game at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on June 10.
This isn’t the first time Oakland is offering up free tickets for grabs; the team is offering free admission for their 50th anniversary game on April 17. According to the Mercury News, the A’s were overwhelmed with nearly 300,000 ticket requests. This number is almost as many tickets the team once sold in an entire season, let alone one game. The Coliseum’s capacity is only 60,000, so the team will be sending out RSVPs to see how many fans could actually come to the game. Although the A’s are no longer taking free ticket applications, season ticket holders will have early access to the ballpark. Everyone else is left to fend for themselves, as seats will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis.