The Market Basket conflict has reached the great American pastime.
The minor league baseball team, the Lowell Spinners, has dubbed its home game next Wednesday an “Artie T. Party.”
Workers are eligible to buy tickets to the game for only $4—a homage, according to a team statement, to the 4 percent that former CEO Arthur T. Demoulas knocked off Market Basket prices this year. The team also plans to invite those associates onto the baseball field for a parade before the game commences.
The Spinners average less than 4,300 fans per game, according to Minor League Baseball’s website. The team’s home stadium capacity is just north of 5,000. Recent Market Basket rallies in Tewksbury have drawn as many as 10,000 people.
Spinners President and General Manager Tim Bawmann called the decision a way to honor the community members who took it upon themselves to leave work and protest the ousting of the beloved former CEO.
“We view ourselves as a community organization,” Bawmann said in a statement. “Clearly this issue has been a dominant topic in our community over the past several weeks.”
Yet he noted that the event wasn’t meant to be overtly partisan.
“It’s not about who’s right and who’s wrong,” Bawmann said. “This is about recognizing the role Market Basket plays in our community and the invaluable role the associates play within our community. This is about giving them a night to relax, enjoy a ballgame and be entertained.”
The Market Basket conflict has spawned weeks of protests, a boycott, and statements from politicians since it began during June.
Market Basket workers can obtain the discounted tickets by showing a employee badge at the box office. The game begins at 7:05 p.m on Wednesday, Aug. 20. The Spinners are playing the Connecticut Tigers.