Briefing 101: The Art of Briefing Your Contestants Essay
Mascot Tips From the Pros
Kevin Kelleher, The PA Guy
Sports Announcing with Jarrod Wronski Interview
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Gameops.com: What is SportsAnnouncing.com?
SportsAnnouncing.com: SportsAnnouncing.com is a site I created to help fellow and would-be P. A. announcers, music personnel and other game ops staff with ideas on different aspects of game production. The site was created because when I first got started announcing in 1992, there wasn't any place to find information on how to announce sports let alone what to play and when.
I've been doing game operations since 1992 for youth sports to major professional sports. During that time, approximately 98% of the events I have done have been the announcing and music, a skill which surprises a lot of people. When I'm doing one or the other, I often find myself getting bored and my ability to see a lot of things happening at once kicks in.
I've done baseball, basketball, football, ice hockey, field hockey, inline hockey, volleyball, lacrosse, soccer, track-and-field, kart racing, wrestling, gymnastics, cheerleading competitions, and broom ball. Currently, SportsAnnouncing.com has provided game production at 67 different arenas, stadiums, and race tracks throughout the world.
Gameops.com: Who have you been targeting your work towards?
SportsAnnouncing.com: My "Guide" work is aimed toward everyone from the first-timer who is just thrown behind the mic for any level of sporting event to collegiate athletics to major professional sports. It doesn't matter how long you've been "in the game," you can always learn something new and that's the basis behind the website and The Announcer's Guides.
My announcing work is targeted at anyone who wants to have a professional announcer at their next event.
When I did my first JV baseball game in 1992 while a freshman at W. T. Woodson High School, I had nothing but a boom box, microphone, really old amplifier and a sheet of paper. On the sheet of paper, it gave the basic gist of what to say to start a game. That and the knowledge of going to local Minor League and Baltimore Orioles games is all I had with me. I developed a style that resembles the late Rex Barney (including his signature "Thank Youuuu" at the end of games) and Tripp Morgan (from the Prince William Pirates/Yankees/Cannons).
Once I got going and had SportsAnnouncing.com up and running, people were always asking me about what do I say in this situation, how do I announce this sport and that's where "The Announcer's Guide" was born. I had notes on several sports and in the fall of 2003, sat down and wrote out all of what should be said during games, how to say it, and in some cases if you should say it. About a year later, the idea to record examples and include a CD was suggested to me. So now each guide comes with an audio CD I recorded with examples on how to announce everything in the guide.
The guides have been purchased by everyone from the youth football parent looking to get started to NCAA D-I schools to professional sports teams.
Baseball, basketball, football and ice hockey are all currently available with volleyball, wrestling, soccer, lacrosse and field hockey coming out next. I'm still putting the final touches on them but hope to have them available by January or February.
Gameops.com: Where are you now and what do you do?
SportsAnnouncing.com: I moved to Portland, Oregon in March following a hockey season that allowed me to announce about 200 games from squirt house to junior elite and MLRH. In March, I was able to announce a game in Maryland (Bowie Ice Arena, Bowie Bruins), Washington D. C. (Ft. Dupont Ice Arena, D. C. Police Hockey Team) and Virginia (Dulles SportsPlex, MLRH D. C. Mad Dogs) which was a lot of fun.
This past spring and summer I was the music director for the Portland Beavers (AAA-affiliate of the San Diego Padres) and the Portland Timbers (United Soccer League). During the course of the season I was able to announce for both teams while also doing the music. This season I was able to set two personal marks, the first was the largest crowd I've ever announced in front of nearly 8,000 for a Timbers late-season game against Richmond, another SportsAnnouncing.com client, and the second was I have now announced for all 30 Major League franchise affiliates (Montreal/Washington is the same team) when Colorado Springs came to town in August. Next year, I'm hoping to get back to the DC area to do one game for the Potomac Nationals to hit the 31st team.
I've been announcing on the professional level since 1998 when I worked for both the Tampa Bay Devil Rays (music) and St. Petersburg Devil Rays (Florida State League, music & PA). That year I also announced some games for the Tampa Yankees (Florida State League). Since then, I've announced for the Charlotte Rangers (Florida State League), done music and P. A. for the Auburn Doubledays (New York-Penn League), Modesto A's (California League), Carolina Mudcats (Southern League on a fill-in basis), and Potomac Cannons (Carolina League). I've announced an entire season at all three advanced-A leagues in Minor League Baseball. The Washington Capitals have also called upon me to announce some group games held at the MCI Center. These are games between two teams who sold tickets to a game to get the right to play on the ice at the MCI Center. In between, I've announced for the Northern Virginia Scholastic Hockey League ('02-'05) including the last three championship games, the Maryland Scholastic Hockey League's playoffs ('05) and the last two National Capital Hockey Tournaments in Washington D. C.
Mascot Tips From the Pros
Kevin Kelleher, The PA Guy
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