I was very upset to learn that the name of our own Grizzlies Stadium has been changed to Chukchansi Park. The Fresno Baseball Club, current owners of the Fresno Grizzlies, recently sold the naming rights to Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino for some $16 million over 15 years. I talked to the Fresno city manager's office and was informed that this was legal according to the lease agreement.
This city-owned stadium was only built after a hard-fought battle by citizens interested in bringing professional baseball back to Fresno. The city still owns the stadium and leases it to the Fresno Baseball Club. I would have thought that any name change to a city-owned property would have to go before the City Council for discussion and vote.
Shame on the city of Fresno for signing away this important item. Double shame on the Fresno Baseball Club for having to prostitute itself. Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino just happened to be the lucky john. I realize this is the reality of today's world, where the name of anything can be bought for a price, but we citizens are still the losers.
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