Snodgrass: “Impressed with the Parkside guys”
The last three years have been a whirlwind for Eric Snodgrass. Since graduating from UW-Parkside in December 2010 with a Sport and Fitness Management degree, the Kenosha native has helped build baseball's Lakeshore Chinooks from the sports turf up.
"I heard there was going to be a new minor league baseball team north of Milwaukee," Snodgrass said about his introduction to hands-on sports management. "I did my senior project on how to build a team."
He would use everything he learned from that project--marketing plans, ticket plans, promotions, and more--to help create the Grafton-based club that debuted in the Northwoods League in 2012. Working for Jim Kacmarcik, the team owner also known for his ownership of Kapco Metal Stampings, Snodgrass endured a year delay in the launch of the team during which he did everything from researching tickets prices and logos to helping out with duties at Kapco. He also worked for the Milwaukee Brewers.
By the time the Chinooks took the field, Snodgrass had been involved in just about every aspect of the team's operations. He called variety one of the advantages of working for a minor league team.
"It's something different every day," Snodgrass said.
He recently returned to campus to speak with current members of the Sport & Fitness Management Club. From his position as manager of ticket sales, Snodgrass has observed UW-Parkside-educated interns in action and liked what he's seen.
"We've really been impressed with the Parkside guys," Snodgrass said. "From resumes to interviews skills to just being able to carry out their jobs and show their passion, we really think Parkside has their program headed in the right direction."
Northwoods is a 16-team summer league featuring top North American college players. Players are not paid but they gain experience using wood bats, traveling, and playing nightly before fans in a stadium. A Northwood team debuts in Kenosha in 2014.
Snodgrass hopes to continue the Chinooks'/UW-Parkside relationship even when the Kenosha team begins operations at Simmons Field.
"We'd love to take a bunch of interns from Parkside each year and have them grow with us as they attend college," he said.
As for his own aspirations, while admitting he has "a ton to learn," and while he's still in his jack-of-trades mode (he can be seen on the team's web site in the Chinooks' "Harlem Shake" video with Gill, the team's mascot) he has a plan he hopes will one day result in him being the general manager of a team.
"That's my main goal. Then we'll go from there," he said about his future.For right now, Snodgrass is focused on putting people in the stands when the Lakeshore Chinooks' 2013 season kicks off May 30 at Kapco Park against the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters.