The one-year break from FanFest is to protect the recently installed playing surface at Safeco Field.
Fans accustomed to experiencing a little bit of baseball in the gray and rain of winter at the annual Mariners FanFest will have to search elsewhere next month.
On Tuesday, the club announced that the two-day event usually held in late January won’t take place this offseason but will return in 2019. The decision was made to protect the playing surface that was recently installed at Safeco Field. The new grass isn’t ready to withstand the fan traffic and activities.
“FanFest is predicated on our fans, especially our young fans, being able to take the field, run the bases, hit a home run and play catch in the outfield,” Mariners President & CEO Kevin Mather said in a statement. “While disappointing, we felt a one-year break in FanFest was a better option than having an event that didn’t provide the full experience our fans deserve.”
The Mariners plan to bring manager Scott Servais and several players to the Northwest in January for other events and appearances. The Mariners’ Caravan, another annual event, will proceed from Jan. 8-26 with a handful of players and staff members visiting 19 cities in the Northwest.