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Our View: Cubs, Cougars partnership a home run

Published: Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012 5:30 a.m. CDT

The Kane County Cougars’ season has been over for only a few weeks, but the anticipation for the 2013 season already is building in a big way.

This week’s announcement that the Cougars signed a two-year player development contract to become the Cubs’ Class A Midwest League affiliate created a level of buzz around the Cougars perhaps unrivaled since the team started playing ball on Kirk Road in 1991.

The Kane County Chronicle’s Facebook page brimmed with elated feedback when the news broke, and it is a safe bet you heard or saw similar reactions if you have even casual baseball fans in your social circle.

It will take time to get a sense of the impact the Cubs partnership will have on the Cougars, but it seems like a no-brainer that a substantial attendance and merchandising bump can be expected.

While the Cougars stand to cash in most directly from the influx of Cubs prospects coming to Geneva, we hope other area businesses also benefit from a new batch of visitors that likely would not otherwise be drawn to the Tri-Cities area. Whether fans spend money at local businesses on game days or become intrigued enough by our area to visit at a later date, this is a can’t hurt/could help proposition for area hotels, restaurants, gas stations and other businesses.

The county’s ongoing planning to enhance the Fabyan Property carries additional promise that the east side of the Batavia/Geneva area can become a recreational focal point that will put the area’s best foot forward to visitors.

As enthused as most Cougars fans were about the news – especially the Cubs fans among us – imagine the high-fiving going on this week among team officials.

The Cougars have long been known for a creative touch when it comes to marketing and promotions. With a whole new world of possibilities opened by the Cubs affiliation, we look forward to seeing what new ideas the team conjures to maximize the marketing potential.

The 2013 season does not start until April, but – more than ever – out of sight will not mean out of mind for the Cougars this offseason.

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