With Major League Baseball’s Spring Training less than a month away, Delaware North Sportservice teams are stepping up preparation efforts in the 11 ballparks in which the company operates food, beverage and/or retail services. And that’s especially true in Atlanta, where Delaware North is preparing for its first season as the Braves’ food and beverage partner.
The new partnership with the Braves, of course, is an all-hands-on-deck effort as 2016 will be the team’s final season at Turner Field before moving into SunTrust Park – a state-of-the-art ballpark that is currently under construction.
Although the Braves players won’t return to the ballpark for a couple months, Delaware North’s leadership team has been assembled and is onsite. The team, pictured at right, includes:
Back row, L to R: Marcelo Miranda, executive chef; Rahman Bey, assistant commissary manager; Jaye Robbins, assistant commissary manager; Richard Perry, facilities manager; Ryan LeFrance, sous chef; Brent Childers, Chophouse manager; Thomas Horvath, concessions manager; Casey Ryan, sous chef; Jason Plafcan, controller; George Raub, operations manager; Joe Collie, SunTrust Club manager; Rory Bancroft, executive sous chef.
Middle row, L to R: Mandy Maldonado, human resources manager; Tiffany Trahan, suites manager; Jami Kypta, project manager.
Front row, L to R: Shawn Mattox, district manager; Alberto Tirado, 755 Club manager; Marcus Collier, food and beverage manager; Brian Childers, commissary manager; C.J. Behr, assistant concessions manager; John Fish, assistant concessions manager.
And in true Delaware North Sportservice fashion, the Turner Field team already introduced a few signature menu items – most notably “T.E.D.,” a nod to the ballpark’s nickname. “T.E.D.,” which stands for “The Everything Dog,” is a footlong, all-beef hot dog in a pretzel bun – topped with beer cheese, Coca-Cola-infused barbecue sauce, chili, popcorn, tortilla chips, jalapenos and French fries.
As for the future home of the Braves, where Delaware North Sportservice will also operate food and beverage services, a team of 10,000 workers have dedicated more than 1.2 million man hours during construction to date.
The project – slated to be complete in time for Opening Day 2017 – will redefine the traditional model of a “live, work and play” development into a “play, work and stay” destination, according to plans. SunTrust Park will flow directly into the surrounding development, creating a lively shopping and entertainment district accessible 365 days a year.
The ballpark will seat 41,500, featuring a three-tier design with the middle and upper decks cantilevered over each lower level to ensure all seats are close to the action.