Sparks, Storm to do mad PR

Several times this WNBA season, I thought about writing a lament that I feel like I hardly know the Sparks this year. By this time last year they’d done several PR events, and fans felt a kinship with them. But this year’s lack isn’t the team’s fault; they have been on the road and haven’t been around.

This is changing, though. Looky what I got in my email inbox tonight:

Sunday, August 2: CAAM Target Sunday (2-3:30pm)
Marie Ferdinand-Harris and the Ole Skool Crew will be dancing, signing autographs, and raffling off Sparks tickets at the California African-American Museum’s Target Sunday at Exposition Park.
Monday, August 3: Sparks Take Over Trader Joe’s in Long Beach!
Your Sparks will adorn Sparks-themed Trader Joe’s shirts as they disperse throughout the store bagging groceries, working tasting areas, and greeting customers on Monday, August 3rd from 3pm-5pm.

Bring a Trader Joe’s receipt dated between Monday, July 27 and Monday, August 3rd valued at $50 or more to the STAPLES Center Box Office and receive two (2) FREE tickets ($48 value) to the “Pay it Forward” game on August 6th presented by Trader Joe’s.
Tuesday, August 4: Silver Stars vs. Sparks (12pm) / LA Women’s Tennis Championships (7pm)
Sit Courtside for Camp Day. Join us at 12pm as the Sparks face San Antonio for our 10th Annual Camp Day. This game is not included in your MVP ticket package, but courtsides and other great seat locations are available. Call 877.44.SPARKS now to purchase tickets, purchase advance parking ($20) or to let us know if your camp day ticket has not yet been received.

Act Like a Kid Postgame at ESPN Zone at LA Live. After the game, all MVPs are invited to pretend they are back in summer camp! Show your 8/4 game ticket to be admitted to a postgame party at ESPN Zone and play games with Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton and Shannon Bobbitt!

Tennis Fans — Join Lisa, Kristi and Vanessa at the LA Women’s Tennis Championships. The Sparks will join stars of the WPS Sol and WTA tour for “Women in Sports Night” at 7pm at the Home Depot Center. As an exclusive MVP benefit, you are invited before the general public to join Kristi Harrower, Vanessa Hayden and Lisa Leslie in an exclusive Sparks Suite. Admission is only $75 and space is limited, so email with “Women’s Tennis” in the subject line and reserve your spot today. Also, watch as Lisa is honored on-court between matches, receive autographs from various female athletes, and have an opportunity to bid on unique items — with proceeds supporting YMCA’s Girls Sports Programs.
Wednesday, August 5: Sparks Throw Out the First Pitch (7:10pm)
Your Sparks Olympians will be at Dodgers Stadium to throw out the ceremonial first pitch in honor of the Dodgers Olympic Anniversary. Head Coach Michael Cooper and forward Candace Parker will also participate in the Jackie Robinson Foundation’s “A Night of Stars” event. To purchase tickets to the exclusive “A Night of Stars” event where you will receive a game ticket, food and beverages, hand-autographed merchandise from special guests and unlimited photo email and put “Dodgers” in the subject line.
Thursday, August 6: Storm vs. Sparks (7:30pm) – “Pay It Forward Night” presented by Trader Joe’s
Fans are encouraged to donate food items (canned food and other non-perishable food) to benefit the Los Angeles Regional Foodbank. Fans that donate food items will receive two FREE Sparks tickets to the August 10th game against the Indiana Fever and the fan who brings the most canned food or non-perishable food will receive an autographed Sparks-themed Trader Joe’s shirt!
Saturday, August 8: MVP Picnic
If you renewed your season tickets by September 30, 2008, you were invited to join us for the MVP Picnic in the Park. Join the coaching staff, the players (and their dogs) for this fantastic annual event!
Monday, August 10: Fever vs. Sparks (7:30pm) – Retro Night
Join us as we go back in time for our Sparks Retro Garage Sale during the game. We’re cleaning out our storage to give you a chance to pick up memorabilia from the past thirteen years at garage sale prices!
Tuesday, August 11: Liberty vs. Sparks (ESPN2; 7:30pm) – Farmers Insurance Night
Don’t miss our only home game against the New York Liberty and receive your exclusive MVP Lisa Leslie Growth Chart poster courtesy of Farmers Insurance at the MVP Entrance located off the 11th Street Entrance.

Good lord, that’s a lot of events! Good deal.

Up north, the Storm are also rolling out the meet and greets, in the form of a 10-year anniversary celebration. I wish I had the dough to buy a plane ticket right now and check it out, since Simone Edwards and Kamila Vodichkova will be there:

10th Anniversary Celebration Night this Saturday

It’s 10th Anniversary Celebration Night when the Storm hosts San Antonio at 7 p.m. and honors the All-Decade Team, as selected by fans, during a special halftime ceremony. Be one of the first 3,000 fans through the doors and receive a commemorative All-Decade Team poster – then get it autographed by your favorite Storm legends pregame on the KeyArena concourse near Aisle 118 from 6:15-6:45 p.m.

Additional 10th Anniversary Celebration Events this Weekend

Friday, July 31 – All-Decade Team Meet & Greet

All-Decade Team Meet & Greet from 7-9 p.m. at SPORT Restaurant & Bar: Participate in a Q&A, get autographs and enjoy extended happy hour beverages and appetizers.
Sunday, Aug. 2 – Storm the Zoo

“Storm the Zoo” with Janell Burse and Ashley Robinson at the Woodland Park Zoo from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Click here to receive $2 off Woodland Park Zoo admission!