Where are the FUTURE CFL Fans, going to come from?

What with all the talk and hype about the New Stadium,... combined with the Lions playing so well ( For the moment, that is!), and how the two, will attract more interest ( For the moment, that is!) to the CFL and to the game, itself.
I was just wondering, What are the Lions and the CFL doing, in regards... to attracting the next generation, of "Future" CFL Fans?
The reason that I ask this question is, that from what I could see, at last Friday nights BIG Game, at the New Stadium......there were very few, Young Fans in attendance.
OK.......I would think, ( Myself included) that the majority of all CFL Fans, are in their later part of their 30's - 40's and 50's and UP?

When we were all growing up, as Kids ( Not that any of us Guys, actually "ever" Grow Up! LOL) the NFL, Nascar, NBA, etc......were not really all that much of a Distraction, from our own Brand of Football.....that being , the CFL.
We were all either "Brain washed" ( In a Good way that is, way back then) to be religiously watching our "Hockey Night" in Canada, every "Saturday Night" at home, in front of our own TVs....and then on Sundays........it was watching our favorite CFL Team play who ever, for that week.
WOW.......are we ever getting OLD! LOL
Road Hockey........was played "EVERY" single day after School and after Dinner......on the streets, in front of our own homes.....and when were not playing Hockey on the streets,......we would be at the Rink.....playing the Real thing.... on the ice!
But........Elementary School, was for playing Touch "CFL" Football ( Or Tackle, when the teachers were not around! lol) at Recess Time and at Lunch Time.....and that is where, we would be Joe Kapp or Angela Mosca or Bill Baker or George Reed etc........and we would become our own CFL heros, for that moment of the day.
But.......do you think.......that any of the "Young" Kids ( Between the ages of 6 and 14 and UP) , know anything at all. about the CFL......these days?
If you asked them......They would know everything, that there is to possibly know about the Canucks or the NHL......they would know all about the NFL and all of it's Star players......they would know all about the MMA and who is who.......BUT.......would any of those Kids ( Who are the Future of the CFL) know "anything" about the CFL and it's Star Players?
I highly Doubt it!
My own Little guy, who is in his 20's now, and is still playing Hockey, has some connections to the CFL....Due in part, to my own Love of the Game.....and me........talking about players like, Ray Nettles, Johnny Musso, Leon Bright, Garrett Hunsberger, Ray Estay, Larry Crawford, Nick Hebler, Glen Jackson......etc.....but.......will....when that time comes...."Will"? my own Son's kids....ever know, who Travis Lulay or Solomon Eliminian or Geroy Simon is....or was?
Some how ......at this moment......I Highly Doubt it!

So having said that.......what is the CFL doing about that?
What are the BC Lions doing about that?
How is the CFL ever going to ever survive,......"IF"?......they are not "already" recruiting and nurturing "NEW" Fans, for the FUTURE of the Game to even exist?
How many CFL Jerseys or T Shirts or Jackets or Hats......do you ever see, being worn by Young Kids from 6 - 14 and UP?
"NONE"!!!!!
How many Kids did I personally see, at last Friday Nights "BIG Game"?.......Not to many!
What ever happened to the BC Lions "Quarterback Club"?
What ever happened to having a section just for Families and Kids..... for the ones, who were not able to afford the "Club Seats" but......could still afford, to come to the games with their Kids and Wives, for a much lesser affordable priced Ticket and "Reasonably Priced" HOT DOGS and Soft Drinks, for the Kids........which wouid be Included in the price of their Ticket!
It seems as if.........the CFL and the LIONS are really missing the Boat......on who their Fans are, and where their next generation of Fans.......will be coming from?
The NHL ....has Totally Priced themselves out, of attracting any Family Business, or in attracting any YOUNG Fans to their Games......at a Reasonable or Affordable priced Ticket........and the CFL, is doing exactly the same thing.
We happen to have Club Seats as Season Ticket holders....and I was absolutely "SHOCKED".........at the "Street Value" of our Tickets ( The Wife handles all of our Tickets and paying for them!) when I was looking at them, at the New Stadium! "OUCH"!!!!!!
My point is.........when I was looking around.......at our Major League Stadium......and seeing our Minor League Team playing on the field in front of us, my thoughts were........where are all the Kids and their Familes?
How can any one, with a Family.......afford to put out this kind of Money.......for a Game, a Product and a League, that the Kids have NO Connection to or any Association with?
Yes........it is a Business.......Just have one look at my Ticket "prices", and that is easily confirmed! LOL
But........My question and concerns are, Where are the next Group of "Young" Fans........going to come from?
A place like Regina, Will always have a Solid Fan base to draw from..just based on the fact......that there is NOTHING else to do.......for Rider Fans!
Even Winnipeg has an NHL Team....again.......so......I would think, that CFL interest, will fall off a bit, due to that?
Ya........Edmonton and Calgary and Toronto all "once had" NHL Teams, as well..... LOL......but.......what is the CFL presently doing, and what are the Clubs doing about........ "Attracting" the YOUNG Kids to the Sport and to the Game?
You would think.......that in any of the CFL Stadiums that are able to hold between 35,000 and 54,500 Fans.........that 5,000 of those seats and Fans or "MORE"?....... could all be held, for the "FUTURE FANS" of the CFL?
Profits.... are a GREAT Thing to have ,for any Business!
But.....with out any Growth or Interest or Loyalty formed, within the CFL and for their own Teams.......there will be, absolutely "No Profit" at all to be made.....and NO CFL Games played, for any of those possible Future YOUNG Fans, to attend.
The Old Empire Stadium, used to be filled with us ( Once "Young" lol) CFL Fans.....and we are still here, cheering on the Lions.
Will our Kids and their Kids, be able to say the same?
Some how......I Doubt it!
The CFL and their own Teams.......are dropping the Ball, "BIG TIME"..... on this one!
Starting on the "FUTURE of the Game"......Come this Saturday, at BC Place.....might be just the thing, that the CFL and the Lions need, in order to make sure.... That there is a Future for the CFL!
Funny thing is.....I can not believe that I am suggesting this.....Just based on the fact that,.... I really can't stand, other peoples Kids! LOL
I must be getting Old! LOL

Good write-up on your post there Backer; I remember the Quarterback Club for us kids at Old Empire and I for one enjoyed that back in 1969 when I was thirteen years old. We all sat in the endzone I believe and got to see a pass caught by Jim Young just at the back of the endzone close up. And after the games us kids ran on the field to touch our favourite players.........those were the days. I felt super when Jack Abendschan of the Roughriders gave me his autograph. Priceless

I see it more now than I used to tho that's for sure.

I was a big Lions fan but their gear used to suck, never any good hats till i got the new era one a couple months ago.

I bought my Lions jersey when I was 20. I was a fan the whole time though regardless as a kid all the way through always goin to games almost every year since the late 80's.

That's just me though and i'm 27 now.

From one 'backer to another 'backer......Thanks!
Your memories of Empire, stirred my own even more.
You are so right 'baker, the best part of the game ( For us Kids) was running around on the Empire Field, after the game......and being able to actually see, and touch and meet our favorite players......prior to them, even leaving the field.
We would run around with our little miniature Footballs, and before you knew it......we had our own game going, with other Kids....who were there for the same reason......to just Tackle "anything" .or "anyone"...that moved! LOL
It is those types of things, that are missing from the game.
The Things.....The Experiences ..The Memories ......that capture the Kids.........for "LIFE" to a Sport, and to an Event and to a Tradition!
Your recollection of meeting Jack Abendschan, is a carbon copy of mine, when I accidently met Bill Baker, during one of my Post Game "Tackles" on my buddy,........to see these two BIG Feet standing over me, when I looked up!
It was Bill Baker "The Under Taker"......standing over the both of us,Laughing.
The CFL and each individual team, has to some how........get that back, into the Game.
With out the Young Kids......being able to come in, and see the games being Played, and be able to actually see these players "Up Close" as we all did,.....the CFL and the Game......will surely Die......a Long drawn out death..

Our other buddy, mentioned .....that the "Lions Gear" and the "CFL Gea",r has gotten a lot better.........Better Quality, I think that he was referring to?
Having said that......."WHY"?......is not not possible, to buy an "Actual" .... "REAL"..... PRO CFL Jersey, of your "Favorite Team"....instead of the Cheaper made, Replica Jerseys, that are being sold??
You can buy REAL NHL Jerseys......You can buy....REAL NFL Jerseys.......you can buy ......REAL MLB Jerseys....but.....they do not Sell..... REAL PRO......CFL Jerseys or make them available, for us CFL Fans to buy and wear?
Promotion is EVERYTHING!

Just so you guys know , authentic Lions jerseys ARE available , you just need to get the info from someone who knows...me. I have several game worn jerseys but if that isn't what you want , go to the practice facility in Surrey and order it up. Pro sizes ( 42 , 46 , 48 etc ) with any name and number. I agree with you that they shouldn't be that hard to get , but you CAN get them.

Good to know that authentic jerseys are available. The only way I was able to land one of them was from the locker room sale. I didn't know you can get customized one. Will need to look into it. How much do the customized ones cost?

Thanks JMC24,

That is great news, and thanks for the info.
I sent you a email, so when you get a chance, do get back me.....and tell me more.
But.......once again, you would think?.....that the CFL and the Lions, and each and every CFL Team, would make these "Real" CFL jerseys, readily available to all of us Fans.
That is where the CFL is continually dropping the Ball, on the Promotion, of their own League and of their own Game!
Look on any NFL team site, or on any NHL team site, or have a look ay any MBL team site.......or any of the BIG University team sites......and you can actually BUY......the "REAL DEAL".......with out, having to search "Every where" and "Every Source" for one of their "Real" Team jerseys!
This is exactly my Number One complaint, about the CFL and their own Teams.
They do as very little as possible, about getting their own Name, Game, Brand or Logo products out there, and into the Schools, into our Homes or into the Teams Stands.....and onto the Backs, Heads, and Butts, of all their Fans, and most importantly onto their "Up coming" YOUNG Fans, out there!
WTF......is with the CFL???
Seriously?
If the CFL needs someone or is looking for some one, to hold their hands on getting their name out there?
I'm definitely available, to help them out!
That is......Once I get my own,....... "Authentic" PRO CFL.... BC. Lions Customized Jersey....."FIRST"! LOL
I'm looking for a Road White.......#56 .....Eliminian Jersey in a Size 52 - 54.....if anyone, in the CFL Front office is listening? LOL
Without Promotion of their CFL Product,.......Where are all the New Future "YOUNG" Fans, going to come from?
I did mention.......that was a #56.......in a Size 52 - 54 ??? LOL

Right you are jmc24. And they have been available for quite some time. We have 4 of them and one each for our kiddos. They don't come cheap but they are better quality than the generic brands!

Some of my earliest memories are of myself and my father sitting in the Hastings Street end-zone at Empire in what was called the 'booster club' in the late 70's. My first autograph was Tyrone Gray on a Lions pennant - I still have it today, faded but you can still read it.

So what if the team gave away free tickets; they made money on the merchandise and concessions and created a life long fan at the same time. Now as a seasons' ticket holder for many years they have more than made up for what they 'spent' on letting us watch for free back then. Not a bad way to do business.

Oddly enough in the only picture I have of myself and my father at Empire, I am wearing an Ottawa Rough Riders shirt. Go figure.

"So what if the team gave away free tickets; they made money on the merchandise and concessions and created a life long fan at the same time. Now as a seasons' ticket holder for many years they have more than made up for what they 'spent' on letting us watch for free back then. Not a bad way to do business."

Well said YoEleven. They are a first class organization in my books and will continue to be. They've always treated us very well over the years from comping us meals to making sure we got our original seats back when we returned to B.C. Place. My wife and I love the Lions.

By the way, I got quite the chuckle when you said you were wearing the Ottawa jersey way back when. :smiley:

Sorry........I copied this off, another post, in regards to the Ticket sales, for this Saturday Nights game.
But.....this Post and comment, is serving Double Duty, in regards to "Where are the Future CFL Fans, going to come from?

Rhymes with Orange, your Post......is exactly what I am referring to, in my own Post........about.......Where are all the New Young Future Fans, going to come from....in order to keep the CFL and the Lions alive?
Lets just say,(for Math purposes), that we already have, 20,000 Season Ticket holders in a 54,000 seat Stadium......who is going to sit, in those other "Empty" 34,000 seats......and what will be the attraction, once the New Stadium loses some of it's appeal and drawing power, and the Lions are having yet another "Sub" par season?
Where are the Fans and the Future Fans going to come from.......if......the Tickets prices and the Concessions are not, a lot more Reasonable and Realistic, for the average Fan and the average Family, who would Love to attend the games??
Playing in a Major League Stadium........with "Two" Minor League Teams, as your ONLY tenants ......and charging Major League Ticket prices and charging their "INSANE Prices" for the Crappy Food, that is being served at their concessions......is a sure fire way.....to Guarantee.......the CFL will eventually Fold!
Did you happen to see on TV, any of the White Caps game, being played in BC Place Stadium, last weekend?
It was really Sad, to see the whole Upper Deck, covered up, with the Tarps that they put around that section, of the Stadium.
WHY?........Play any games.... in a 54,500 seat Stadium, when almost 40, 000 of those seats, are EMPTY!
We are not talking about Manchester United here.......and we are certainly not talking about, having the New England Patriots as our Home Team........we are talking about having Two Minor League Teams......playing out of a Major League Facility......and eventually, both of these Teams, will be playing before an Empty House......based on them both, Playing Poorly, in the very near Future......at some point, this will happen.
My point is........Start to build some Long Term following, and some Long Term Loyalty, and a "Life Long" Fan base, by catering to the "Kids" and catering to the "Families" and to the Grand Parents ( Who have been Life Long Fans!) who are all looking for a "Family FUN Event" to go to......on a Regular basis!
WHY?.........have 30,000 to 40,000 "EMPTY" Seats.........when you could have a "PACKED HOUSE" to each and every game ......."if"... the Teams and the League, were just to do it Right, for once!
With out getting Butts into those seats, and with out thinking about, the "FUTURE" Fans of the Lions and the League.....and by catering to the "YOUNG" Kids out there.......The CFL is surely Doomed!

You Canadian's kill me. Even after a good game and a great crowd, you go right for the negative. Then again you were also the guy, that said the Lions would not even get close to 50,000 for the opener. The CFL has been on an upswing for the last 5 or 6 years. Do you not recall how not that long ago the Lions would get 12,000, the TV ratings on CBC sat about 140,000 ave per week. Every team in the CFL lost money. Now we have 6 out of 8 teams making money (including the Lions) new stadiums coming on board in Hamilton (which should make the Cat's into a money maker) Winnipeg,BC refrubused stadium in Montreal and a new team, plus new stadium in Ottawa. TV ratings have gone from the 140,000 to just under 700,000 ave. Yes, the CFL should help market to a younger demographic, but I have been hearing since the 70s, "Where are the under 30 CFL fans. Guess what, you evolved into a CFL fan, when you get a little older and you can see through the WWE type marketing of other sports league and know it's just sizzle without the steak. Go over to England and call the English premiere league "minor league" and see what happens to you. Japan does not call its baseball league minor league either. Yet both leagues are not considered the best in the world. The CFL is the best football league in the world playing CFL rules. Minor leagues don't sell tickets to their playoff games for 300 bucks each and have a game gate of over 14 million. Minor leagues don't charge an average of over 65 bucks per ticket for regular games. Minor leagues don't get TV ratings of 700,000 ave and draw a TV audience of over 14 million for its championship game. The CFL is now the #1 rated sports property on the #1 rated sports channel in Canada, beating out even the NHL. Not bad for a so called minor league. You may want to start helping the lions attract a younger fan by changing your perception of your self imposed Minor league status, of which the CFL is not

[b]Flutiefan02~ Welcome to the Lions forum. And kudos for the great post! I agree whole heartedly that the CFL is the best football league in the world playing by CFL rules. While there are some things that still frustrate my wife and me though we've been seasons ticket holders for several years now I believe we get excellent entertainment value for what we pay. For us it is what BOTH teams do on the field, not just what the Lions do. While I'm hoping that the Lions make it to the Grey Cup game this year we will enjoy watching the two best teams go at it in B.C. Place. We'll enjoy the hotdogs and other refreshments and know we'll be having a great day.

There are some things the various CFL clubs could do differently, but they are doing a heck of a lot of things right. It is great to go to the Lions practices out in Surrey and talk it up with the guys after their practice and see that these are regular guys like the rest of us but also guys who have special athletic ability. It is great to see how these guys play their brains out not just to keep their jobs but because their passion is football. Guys getting concussions, broken wrists, broken arms and feet and in some case almost broken necks like we saw last week with that Hamilton player all speak volumes about the tenacity these guys play with.

The CFL is NOT bush league and it never will be. I wish it were not a stepping stone to the NFL for many of the top quality players but that is just the way it is and most of us would do the same as Mallett, Moon, Logan, Wake and Doug Flutie if given the chance. Good for them and lucky us that they played in the CFL at one time.

The CFL may not have the same audience and same hype as the NFL but the entertainment value most often is second to none. Thanks for posting your comments.[/b] :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup: :thup:

are you an octopus???

Too funny Footbalyoubet! Too funny! rotfl

Beagle, this post is about "Where are the Future CFL Fans, going to come from?
The post is not, about debating whether or not, the guys are all nice guys or not. lol
If......you are wanting to discuss that Subject?....Feel free, to start your own Topic on that exact theme........on yet......another Post, by yourself.
But,,,,,,the Topic here is .......What is the CFL and the Lions themselves doing, in regards to attracting NEW Fans to the game.

The same applies to yourself , Flutiefan.
Some how....I really really doubt your own stats, and your own statement, in regards to the popularity of the CFL over the NHL, when it comes to watching the CFL game on TV! LOL
You State:....."The CFL is now the #1 rated sports property" on the #1 rated sports channel in Canada, "beating out" even the NHL. Not bad for a so called minor league.
Flutiefan, would you care to expand on that ridiculous statement, with some actual Documented Posted Stats, from a reliable outside source, besides you own mouth? lol
I guarantee, that their are NO Young Kids out there, or any Adults, for that matter.... picking to watch, the CFL over the NHL, on any given day. lol
That is just a ridiculous statement to be made, by anyone!
Watching a CFL game in person, is one thing.....but......watching a CFL game on TV......is just Painful at best.
I have to ask you Beagle ( In a nice way)....Just how many Different Profiles, do you actually have?
I think that we have counted 3 so far, according to our friend, Tyrone.
The writing style and arguments presented by Fluitefan ( Much like yourself?) and your own applause and quick Full support of his Post and comments, ( Which are not on Topic, like your own) makes one wonder....Just how many Profiles, you actually have on this Forum?
You got to admit.......it does seem a little Fishy, don't ya think? lol
Sorry for getting off subject here, on the Original Posted Topic, .......But......just needed to address, both of "your own" comments "Beagle". lol
Beagle .....Please Post a "NEW Topic" on ......Who thinks the CFL is BUSH League and WHY?
Or......how about a New Subject matter on.......Who thinks that MORE viewers watch the CFL over the NHL? lol :roll:
Or......Who thinks that the CFL is Minor League and WHY?
This post is about........."Where are the FUTURE CFL Fans, going to come from"?
Beagle.....and your other alias's .....Try to keep on the Topic...or.....Feel Free, to Post a New Topic, on something that interests you, and all of your "other" Profile names.
As usual, we are all looking forward, to your Informative posts!
Try to stay on Topic.
Thanks for contributing, Beagle.

Empire
I made the statement that the CFL outdraws the NFL on TSN, because it's true. Go to the TSN site and see for yourself. Go to the BBM site and check TV ratings for sports league. On CBC the number one sports league is the NHL, which draws a ave of 1.6 million, but that on the CBC. On TSN the NHL Ave about 500,000 the CFL does 700,000 the fact's are right there for you to see. i deal in fact;s, you deal in your opinion. You can state what every you want, but the facts are the CFL on TSN, is that channels # sports property. The CFL is second only to the NHL on CBC,but the CFL beats, both the NBA and MLB in the ratings consistantly. When the CFL goes head to head with the NFL, they beat themm too. Again look it up. as far as yonger fans for the CFL go, i have been hearing that since the 70s. Perhaps you should also go a the NFL site with your concerns, since according ESPN the NFL has been droping in attandance and TV ratings forthe last 4 years

Thanks Flutie for the information on the Ratings.
But lets take this Popularity discussion, to another Post.
I tell you what.....I'll get it going. lol

My issue is the negitivity, right after a great game, in by all account's a great staduim with over 50,000 people in it. You got the Grey Cup in BC sold out in weeks, the lions on a roll and it was negitve, negitive, it seems that guys like you claim to be fans, but take issue when the league is doing well. I was at both games (Caps, Lions) the Cap game was dead and looked like most of the people there were just looking at the dome. The lion games was fun and I have never seen that much people wearing Lion gear before. The CFL is being run like the Major league it is, for the last 7 to 8 years and it's paying off. Sure the league has some issues, but what league does not. Did you catch the Bengels game last week ,playing in front of 30,000. Of course the NFL used it's narrow camera angle shots, so you don't see the empty seats and that's smart business. The NHL can't do that because there is empty seat's in half the areans. Won't even discuss the NBA, since there not even playing, and as soon as MLSE dump's TFC due to lack of fan interest,you will see must of the MLS teams gone from Canada. even perhaps whole league will go since only 2 teams make any money for MLS. You want to talk young fans, have you been to a MLB game in the last 5 years. it take you 20 mins just to get to your seats, because of all the fans who use walkers are in the way.

Well stated flutie02. When the Lions are able to draw a crowd of 50,000+ for a regular season game that speaks volumes. Especially when you are seeing so many young people in the stands. Kids, teens, 20 something crowd. The Lions organization is alive and well and we can thank Wally Buono and upper management and of course the players themselves.

Sure, some of the crowd were curiousity seekers and wanted to see the new digs but it doesn’t matter. In the late 90s the Lions were going through a rough patch. A few years later they were doubling their fan attendance. They had a better product on the field. This most recent game against Edmonton was one of the most exciting games my wife and I have ever attended in B.C. Place! The energy in the stadium was electrifying and I’m sure the players loved it.

There have been games where the Lions have stunk the place out like that one game against of all teams…Edmonton in 2009. [maybe 2008] They were about 40 points ahead and fans were pouring out of the stadium with still 5 minutes left in the 3rd quarter. The 3RD QUARTER! Can you believe it? In fact watching the game was like a comedy. Our friends seated around us were still having a great time. A couple of us even donned on Edmonton jerseys which we brought along in case the Lions imploded. All done in fun of course. lol