A sea of grey and red shirts engulfed the seats behind the right field line of Citizens Bank Park only a few minutes before the opening pitch. The smell of hot dogs, peanuts and popcorn filled the air.
Fans raced to their seats as the Cabrini College chorus appeared from the tunnel to serenade the audience with the National Anthem. Then there was an eruption from the crowd as the big screen read, “Cabrini Night at the Phillies.”
The Cabrini College dance team made their way to the field during the fifth inning where they performed a Michael Jackson tribute with the Philly Phanatic.
“We look forward to dancing with the Phanatic at every ‘Cabrini Night’ but having the opportunity to dance on the field instead of on top of the dugout made the night that much more exciting,” Mallory Beach, dance team captain, said.
Cabrini Night at the Phillies is a special way the college welcomes freshmen to the campus as a part of their orientation.
“The Phillies game has become a tradition now at Cabrini.
“It is a way for freshmen to get a taste of what we have here and the relationship we have with the Phillies,” Amber LaJeunesse, assistant director of Student Engagement and Leadership, said .
Over the past four years, Cabrini took the initiative to form a strong relationship with the Philadelphia Phillies organization. Although other companies and organizations have a game dedicated to them, Scott Nickle, manager of advertising and sales for the Phillies, claims that the relationship with Cabrini is one of the strongest.
“The partnership we have with Cabrini is different because it’s a university. Cabrini brings a lot of energy and there is a great fit between the two,” Nickle said.
Along with Cabrini Night, the Phillies organization also participates in freshman move-in day. The Philly Phanatic entertains all of the freshmen and their families as they move in on their first day.
“We really have no partnership to the extent we have with Cabrini and we hope to enhance it as the years go by,” Nickle said.
The freshmen receive free tickets, purchased by the college, for the game and also receive a free t-shirt that they wear to represent Cabrini.
“The Phillies game is a great idea. I think it is a good thing that Cabrini is doing,” James Lindsay, freshman business administration major, said.
During orientation, Cabrini has many activities to help the freshmen get involved as well as mingle with their peers but the Phillies game seems to be the favorite.
“I’m really having a great time. I definitely want to come again,” Sarah Barret, freshman exercise science major, said. “It’s nice that Cabrini does all of this for the new students.”
LaJeunesse feels like the correlation with the Phillies and Cabrini Night attracts people to the campus. “People looking from the outside in want to get involved with it and be a part of the partnership.”
The freshmen aren’t the only ones reaping the benefits of this partnership. Upperclassmen and faculty can buy tickets as well at a discounted price. This allows the whole campus to get involved and enjoy the festivities of the evening.
“I keep coming back year after year because it is a fun night out with all my friends and a fun night to enjoy the Phils,” Kevin McAvoy, junior business administration major, said.