With all the attention being paid to the new 1741 Club presented by UPMC here at PeoplesBank Park, let’s show some love to the other half of our exciting renovation project: two brand spanking new nightly rental suites to replace the former White Rose Hall. The new suites take the place of what used to be five of our private skyboxes on the far end of the first base side of the skybox level. They will open for the 2019 season, just like the 1741 Club, and will feature all-new décor and furnishings for both baseball games and other types of business functions on non-game days.
The obvious question is, “Why go to all this trouble and expense?” The answer is pretty basic – we are in the hospitality business, and to stay successful we have to evolve to meet our customers’ needs. That’s why as part of the planning for the 1741 Club, we looked at all the options of how to use all of our space – we did a complete analysis of our skybox owners, companies, and groups that held events at PeoplesBank Park. One obvious outcome was the creation of the 1741 Club, but the other was the realization that our space had become stale, and in fact in many cases the size of the rental suites didn’t fit well with the size of the typical groups who wanted to hold events with us. Too often, the entire White Rose Hall was too large and felt half-empty, but our small rooms for up to 40 people were not quite big enough. So, we decided to “swap” some spaces, make the White Rose Hall into our new flexible club, and start from scratch on nightly event rooms.
The Monarch and Solomon Suites are the result. Monarch will hold up to 50 people and Solomon up to 70 guests, and they can be combined for a party of up to 120. Each has a counter and sink that enable us to offer full-bar service if desired. As with the 1741 Club, the décor and furnishings will be warm and comfortable – more like a bar or restaurant than a typical hotel ballroom. Both will include balcony seating for those fans who want to sit and watch the baseball game, but also plenty of casual seating inside for those who would rather chat with friends. And, for non-baseball events, we have purchased new meeting tables and chairs we can swap out to create any typical board meeting or classroom-style arrangement.
Now that all the demolition is complete and the space is opened up, it’s really obvious what a great feel it is going to have – the dimensions of the rooms and the sense of light and comfort are really great, a big improvement over our old spaces. In the next couple of weeks, Wagman Construction will be installing the new ceilings, wall coverings, and carpeting, and we’ll be all set to host your event starting on Opening Day, April 26.
Your final – and obvious – questions is likely, “Where the heck do the names Monarch and Solomon come from for these rooms? That’s a neat story also – the names honor two aspects of York’s Negro League history that have not been recognized in our ballpark.
The Monarch Suite pays tribute to another pioneering York baseball team and a pivotal contributor to the history of Negro League Baseball, the Colored Monarchs of the Diamond. Formerly the Cuban Giants based in Trenton, New Jersey, the Monarchs moved to York in 1890 as part of the Interstate League. The Monarchs dominated the league with a 40-16 record and were considered the pennant winner when the league disbanded in July 1890. They were 88-27 versus teams from 32 towns in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
The Solomon Suite honors the legacy of King Solomon “Sol” White, second baseman of the Colored Monarchs of the Diamond during their season in York and a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. One of the most important names in Negro League Baseball, in 54 games in York, White hit .350 and stole 21 bases. His playing career spanned five seasons and 152 games, in which he hit .359 with 169 runs scored, 231 hits, 40 doubles, and 41 stolen bases. After, he moved into team management and spent nearly 25 years building rosters and managing seasons for teams in Philadelphia, New York, Columbus, and Cleveland, as well as in the Cuban League. White also authored the first – and, for a long time, only – book on Negro League Baseball, History of Colored Baseball. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006.
So now you’ve learned what these great new additions will do for our guests and how we named them. Now I have a question for you: What date do you want to book?
– Eric Menzer, President, York Revolution