Last week the dream to bring Major League Baseball back to Montreal came another home run closer to reality. For the second year in a row our somewhat dilapidated Olympic Stadium came gloriously back to life to welcome 96,000 excited fans to watch two exhibition games between The Toronto Blue Jays and The Cincinnati Reds.
Front and centre of the crowd and movement is Plank Founder & CEO Warren Wilansky. He’s a lifetime Baseball fan and a passionate activist campaigning to bring MLB back to our city - a game not played here since the Expos relocated to Washington DC and renamed as The Nationals in October 2004.
Now in it’s third year, Warren and Plank are proud to be a supporting partner of the Montreal Baseball Project (MBP). A campaign fronted by Montreal Expos legend Warren Cromartie and one thats gathering pace and momentum in Major League Baseball and Canadian Sport & Culture circles. The project has one, simple goal. Give the people of Montreal and Quebec a new MLB team and a home to watch them play in.
Plank have been working with The Montreal Baseball Project since 2013 when we completed a full redesign of their website.
Our ultimate goal was to create a platform to help make Major League Baseball in Montreal a reality. Using Wordpress we created a responsive, high-end user experience that represents the history of baseball in Montreal from a design perspective, supports Expos fundraising and profile building Galas and brings fans right up to date with the latest campaign news and information.
Inspired by Cromartie’s energy and commitment and the aim of The Montreal Baseball Project we wanted to demonstrate our own passion for the sport and love of all things digital. We wanted to find a way to bridge the gap between technology and the sport and bring a new angle to Montreal’s Baseball conversation. Two weeks ago we were proud to host and run Montreal’s first Annual Baseball Hack Day, held at technology and start-up hotbed Notman House.
Following on from the success of Baseball Hack Day events in Boston and Philadelphia our aim was to bring Montreal’s creative minds into one room and see what they could produce within a limited time. We were looking for a baseball themed tool, simple web app, mobile app, website, or data visualization. With a data set that extends back almost 150 years, there was no better sport to challenge the development of unique technical & design focused internet projects.
Timed to coincide with the 2015 Montreal Baseball Project All-Star Gala on 1st April and The Blue Jays vs. The Cincinnati Reds exhibition games a few days later, this was the perfect time to fuse Montreal’s technology and sports communities. The event happened simultaneously across Montreal, Boston and Philadelphia and some truly great work was delivered. To support the activity we developed a fully responsive site, branded to focus on the history of Baseball in Montreal and not just the Expos. We used social media as a key tool to promote the day and drive registration and share updates pre, during and post the event.
We were very grateful for the support from our sponsors and judges from the city’s sporting, creative and technology communities who helped make the event happen.