HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Rocket City Trash Pandas won’t play for another 18 months, but the team is already breaking records. Merchandise sales have beat out past Minor League Baseball records, and the team has garnered the attention of major league executives.
Ralph Nelson, the teams owner, says the El Paso Chihuahuas held a record for selling 1,022 items in three months. Monday, the Trash Pandas hit 3,000 items sold in just 6 weeks. “We’re 18 months away from the first pitch. Who in baseball has generated the kind of revenue that we’ve generated," Nelson questioned.
Total sales and provision have surpassed $500,000. The record was $300,000 in three months.
“I am so excited. I used to go to the baseball games in Huntsville with my dad when I was a kid and I’m so excited to have them back," Hannah Meyer said. She was shopping for Christmas gifts in the teams shop at Bridge Street Town Center.
Nelson credits the teams early financial success to community support of their brand. “It’s kind of the perfect storm that’s worked out, and we’re very, very happy," Nelson said.
The support doesn’t stop at the merchandise. More than 500 season tickets have been sold. Nelson says it’s best to enter a season with 30% of the seats sold to season ticket holders. That number would be around 1,200 for the new Madison stadium. He believes they are well on their way to achieving that goal.
“I’m not concerned about keeping the momentum going. This community is so fabulous. They’ve done such a great job supporting us....I’m not really all that concerned about it," Nelson proclaimed.
The store may close December 30. Although, brand leaders are discussing an extension based on its popularity.
Nelson says team jerseys will be revealed in the spring and sells will begin shortly after.