Modern Woodmen Park opens new business center

Posted Online: March 14, 2013, 9:41 pm
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By Jonathan Turner,
DAVENPORT -- Modern Woodmen Park -- with baseball, private parties and a planned Ferris wheel and zip line -- is not just a place to play hard. Thanks to a new renovation, the 82-year-old stadium is now a place to work hard.

The Quad Cities River Bandits and Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon-cutting on Thursday to unveil the new Bandits Business Center in what formerly was a storage room and part of the team gift shop.

"To use this ballpark for as many different purposes as we can, that's been our purpose from day one," Bandits owner Dave Heller said. "This setting is unmatched, unparalleled. To me, it's every day -- not just the 70 times we play baseball. We take the ballpark and make it relevant to the community. That's what's really exciting."

With new paint, carpeting, office furniture and a built-in SMART board with a microphone and speakers, the Bandits Business Center is available for hosting presentations, training seminars and meetings.

On the first floor adjacent to the lobby and offices at Modern Woodmen Park, the space can be used by businesses and organizations (up to 48 people) on game days and non-game days.

"The continuous improvements to Modern Woodmen Park benefit the entire Quad-Cities community, and the new Bandits Business Center powered by Bradfield's will give more opportunities to businesses across the region to use our venue," Mr. Heller said.

"Each year, we host thousands of people in the Quad-Cities for special events, and the Bandits Business Center will be another place for unique experiences at the ballpark."

Between Dec. 1 and 23, 2012, the park's skydeck was in use every night for private Christmas parties, he said.

Businesses have used luxury suites (which accommodate about 20 people) for meetings before games, said MWP executive director Stefanie Brown.

"There's been demand for a separate space," she said. The new business center can be rented for $40 per hour – a rate that includes two hours of set-up free of charge. The River Bandits also will offer a "Meet and Suite" package, which is $25 per hour with the purchase of a suite ($200 and up, depending on attendance) for a River Bandits home game, Ms. Brown said.

Peoria-based Bradfield's has provided many area schools with SMART boards. Now local businesses can have the same access to this "extraordinary" technology, said Bandits general manager Harold Craw.

"All of our guests will also receive the outstanding hospitality of our staff, who are dedicated to making every event memorable at Modern Woodmen Park," he said.

A SMART board functions as an oversized touch-sensitive computer display. Using a special pen, a finger or virtually any object, users can control computer applications, write notes, pull up charts and images, erase or rearrange objects on screen, search the Internet, play videos and save work.

Anyoneinterested in renting the Bandits Business Center for a future event may contact Andrea Nolan at or Shauna Learn at or call the front office at 563-324-3000.


Local events heading

  Today is Thursday, Oct. 2, the 275th day of 2014. There are 90 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The ladies have adopted the fashion of wearing representations of insects in the flowers on their bonnets. Some look very natural.
1889 -- 125 years ago: T.F. Cary, former Rock Island alderman, has accepted a position as salesman for a Chicago wallpaper house and plans to move to that city.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Work on the new telephone building on 18th Street between 6th and 7th avenues is progressing rapidly.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Rock Island's new theater at 3rd Avenue and 19th Street will have a name significant of its location. The "Rocket" is scheduled to open Thanksgiving Day.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Two of Rock Island's newest water towers were vandalized last night, including the one at 38th Street and 31st Avenue, where police took five Moline boys into custody about 9 p.m..
1989 -- 25 years ago: Some of us who live in the Quad-Cities take the Mississippi River for granted, or at least we used to. But the river is not taken for granted by our visitors. And most Quad-Citians are realizing the importance of the river to this area as increased emphasis is placed on tourism.

(More History)