Oklahoma City Barons: Jon Beilstein focuses on Barons' long-term future

Beilstein using same strategy that helped attendance increase in Grand Rapids, Mich.
by Michael Baldwin Published: April 19, 2013

photo - Mark Arcobello with the Oklahoma City Barons goes past Quintin Laing of the Abbotsford Heat during an AHL hockey game at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Friday, April 19, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Mark Arcobello with the Oklahoma City Barons goes past Quintin Laing of the Abbotsford Heat during an AHL hockey game at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Friday, April 19, 2013. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

The next step is improving group sales, a priority next summer.

“In Grand Rapids, I averaged 54 people per group,” Beilstein said. “This season in Oklahoma City, we're below 20. The big businesses like Tinker Air Force Base, whoever it might be, it takes a lot of time during the offseason to develop those types of relationships.”

After college, Beilstein was a PGA member/teaching pro for seven years. The next 15 years he worked in various businesses ranging from life insurance annuities to financial resources in St. Louis.

When he learned he would become a father, he no longer wanted to fly 180,000 miles a year. While in St. Louis, he formed connections with the St. Louis Blues, which led to the opportunity with the Grand Rapids Griffins.

“Their first three years, they drew well but their attendance was spiraling downward when I got there,” Beilstein said. “The model we used there is the same model we're using here. It's going to take solid increases every year. It won't be done on gimmicks. It takes longer. But once you get there it stays.”

by Michael Baldwin
Reporter
Mike Baldwin has been a sports reporter for The Oklahoman since 1982. Mike graduated from Okmulgee High School in 1974 and attended Oklahoma Christian University, graduating with a journalism degree in 1978. Mike's first job was sports editor...
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