Getting on the bench is the new high-tech fan experience at Dodger Stadium

When famous baseball architect Janet Marie Smith set out to renovate Dodger Stadium, she wanted to preserve its vintage style while adding a ‘2020 apron’ around the stadium, meaning the latest amenities and comforts fans have come to expect. now when they attend a match.

“The squares we built were supposed to conform to the architecture of 1962,” says Smith, executive vice president of planning and development for the Dodgers. “The uniqueness of Dodger Stadium is that it is the only mid-century modern building. It is the only one with these pastel colors. It’s the only one with those funky hexagonal shapes.

The central square effectively became the gateway to Dodger Stadium, where there is now an attraction that skillfully distinguishes between a historic timepiece and a modern marvel. A carefully replicated domestic Dodgers dugout hosts an augmented reality experience where fans can sit and snap a photo with active players superimposed on the resulting image.

“Taking a photo with a player is a dream come true for a lot of people, but it’s obviously not particularly achievable on any given day,” said Caroline Morgan, vice president of digital strategy at Dodgers. “So this is a great opportunity for fans to have something fun to do and realistic. It’s the perfect modern digital keepsake.

The Dodgers hired an award-winning, tech-driven creative agency, Space150, to help develop activation. More than 20 Dodgers players took part in an early season video shoot, in which they filmed various poses and actions entering the camera frame and joining fans for a photo. Stars and fan favorites such as Mookie Betts, Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner and David Price all attended. (Trevor Bauer was part of the initial experience, but the Dodgers pulled him off after he was put on administrative leave over a sexual assault allegation.) Fans can choose any pair of players who, as it appears in the video, will sit down. on the canoe bench next to them.

“It just has a really positive vibe because it has this kind of magical tech app,” Space150 Executive Creative Director Ned Lampert said. “It almost feels like you’re going to Disney’s haunted house in a lot of ways. And also, it is the canoe, to scale.

The small touches help promote a sense of realism. The dugout is the right size, contains a real pen phone that was previously installed in the real Dodgers dugout, and bumps and bumps have been deliberately added to create a feel of the game. was too blank, there was no way it was genuine, ”Smith said.

Even the Spectrum-branded portal that fans use to select their player choices has a familiar hexagonal shape. “Concretely, the screen on which you see everything has been modeled from the dashboard,” explains Lampert. “We tried to stay true to that shape because it’s such an iconic shape. It’s so tied to Dodger Stadium that baseball just has cultural things that a lot of sports don’t.

The video clips are formatted for mobile viewing first with easy social sharing. Space150 has done a lot of AR work, often wrapping media to be native to a certain platform, be it Instagram or Snapchat. “Phones are so powerful,” Lampert says. “It’s not something I have to explain to anyone, but the way we are able to condition the assets, it’s a really rich environment. “

Morgan says his team’s charge was to take the vision of Smith and club CEO Stan Kasten to preserve the stadium’s “historic essence” while embracing “the innovative, forward-thinking elements that are truly focused on the stadium. fan interaction “. She expects more blended integrations to engage fans of all sports. “It will definitely become more integrated,” Morgan says. “It’s always a balance. It was a great example of something avant-garde and visually innovative, but also feels like a hat trick to the history of the stadium. A lot of what we did was try to take analog and historical experiences and add digital elements to it, so it’s a hybrid model.

The shelf life of such fan engagement creations will surely be less than the architecture of a baseball stadium, so the Dodgers have deliberately installed what they installed so as not to overwhelm the space. “He has to live,” says Smith. “It won’t stand the test of time the way a building does. Just having one or two big, big-name pieces that talk about technology was really important to us. “

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