Sports Shorts

In each of their first eight years of baseball,

the Lakewood BlueClaws have entertained fans with colorful fireworks shows. The team announced Monday that a slate of 14 shows, the most ever, are on the schedule for 2009.

The fireworks shows once again take place after every Friday home game, for a total of 12. Additional fireworks nights take place on May 24, the night before Memorial Day, and Thursday, July 2. The series is again presented by Toyota/Scion World of Lakewood.

“Fireworks nights have been our most popular promotion since we started here in 2001,” said BlueClaws General Manager Geoff Brown. “We’re excited they’re back again in 2009 and thank Toyota for their support.”

In 2008, the BlueClaws’ three highest attendance nights fell on Fireworks Fridays, including the 10,027 that came out on Aug. 29, the second highest single-game attendance total in team history.

The BlueClaws provide a package of seven fireworks nights as part of their Bushel of BlueClaws Entertainment Stimulus Package. Fans get a 10 percent discount on the price of tickets, free tickets to a show at the Surflight Theatre, free tickets to a Monmouth University men’s basketball game, and their choice of free Phillies tickets, Nets tickets, New Jersey Ironmen tickets, or AMC movie passes.

For the most die-hard fireworks fans, the BlueClaws will offer a special fireworks “partial-plan” of BlueClaws tickets, featuring the 14 fireworks nights plus opening day, on April 9. Partial plans feature a 15 percent discount on the price of tickets, plus the ability to take on-field batting practice and the opportunity to access the Upstairs Club, a bar and grill on the second level of FirstEnergy Park. Partial-plan holders also receive all the benefits of a Bushel of Blue- Claws.

With these dates the most popular at the park, it is best to book any ticket packages as early as possible to ensure the best seating, Blue Claws management recommended. Contact a BlueClaws ticket representative at 732-901-7000 and press option 3.

The Lakewood BlueClaws, an affiliate of the 2008 World Champion Philadelphia Phillies, welcomed 425,166 fans to FirstEnergy Park during the 2008 season which upped their eight-season total to 3,595,378. They have led the South Atlantic League in average or overall attendance in each of their eight seasons.