Volcanoes set to take part in Latin outreach program in 2020

The Salem-Keizer Volcanoes have been selected by Minor League Baseball as one of 22 teams across the country to join their Copa de la Diversión program beginning in the 2020 season.

Copa de la Diversión, is a season-long event series specifically designed to embrace the culture and values that resonate most with participating teams’ local Hispanic/Latino communities.

After its test run with two teams (Las Vegas and Charlotte) in 2017, Copa de la Diversión began in earnest in 2018. The program grew in 2019, and is adding 22 additional teams in 2020, including the Volcanoes. 

This program is designed to be an organic outreach program with the intent to bridge the gap between the Latinx community, creating a decidedly more inclusive environment in the stadium and in the community. Promoting and supporting the Hispanic culture in their ballpark, on specific nights, the Volcanoes will adopt a new identity (the Campesinos) themed around aspects of the Latino heritage that reflect both the spirit of the club and the community they represent. 

Sporting vibrantly colored uniforms and new logos, the Campesinos will take the field to Spanish music while fans will enjoy food, games and special guests that celebrate the Hispanic culture.

The program has already experienced early success for the last two seasons. 

“The fact that kids are loving the program made it resonate loudly with us,” said Mickey Walker, CEO for the Volcanoes. “We can hardly wait to take the field as the Campesinos next season.”

The first night this will take place at Volcanoes Stadium will be Sunday, June 21, which is also Father’s Day. 

Five additional Campesinos dates have been selected: July 5, July 26, Aug. 8, Aug. 16 and Sept. 5.  

About the Campesinos: A tribute to their hard work, Salem-Keizer’s “Campesinos” moniker pays tribute to the collective contributions of farm workers toward establishing Oregon as one of the leading agricultural regions in the United States.

“The Campesinos name, logos, wordmarks and El Campo symbol were developed and selected by members of our local Hispanic community, including the Latino Business Alliance,” said Mitche Graf, president of business operations for the Volcanoes. “That led us to something that is exciting for our Hispanic fans. I think even our non-Hispanic fans are going to be excited about this. We’ve been working on this since January.”

“This will also provide our Latino players the opportunity to feel more comfortable and get acclimated quicker to their new surroundings. It’s truly a win-win scenario for everyone,” added Walker. 

Minor League Baseball reported that attendance spiked more than 24 percent on Copa de la Diversión Nights last season.

The official on-field uniforms are in development and will be announced in Spring.