One of the real treasures of having a minor league team in your town is that you actually interact with the players, team, and staff. The Barons are no different. The league mandates via their CBA how many public appearances that the players can make, and the Barons max out those opportunities every season. Why? Because they embrace the community they entertain. If you visit the community section of the Barons page, you’ll see a brief synopsis of the community endeavors put forth by the team. Not mentioned are the support they give to active military, Oklahoma Blood Institute, and health/fitness endeavors. They really are a busy team.
The above photo, taken by the incomparable Rob Ferguson, is of Cameron Abney and Ryan Martindale playing Mario Kart. That, in and of itself, is a fantastic piece of imagery. But it was taken at a Barons Buddies event which pairs a Special Olympics family with an “adopted” player.
The organized play on the ice for the Barons is all about development. And one can argue that community involvement that takes place off the ice is equally as important in the development process.