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Bend Elks Concessions: Why are lines so Long?

April 21st, 2016

Recently we created a survey asking our fans to tell us what they would like to see changed and improved at the ballpark. There is one negative experience that keeps appearing for many of our fans. Why are our concession lines so long and slow?

This is a concern we definitely agree with! It is not fun going to a baseball game just to wait in the concession lines. On some nights at Vince Genna, especially our busy nights like Tuesdays, these lines can be very long and seem very slow.

So what are we doing about it? That is a very good question! In this blog post I will share some of the complications and challenges, as well as some of the tings we are trying to do. The key message is we hear you and are working to make it better.

First the challenges. Essentially we have four main areas: the BBQ Deck, our Beer Garden, the Beer Stand, and our Main Concessions area. While we love the history and nostalgia of Vince Genna Stadium, the facilities themselves can create some challenges of their own. Each of these four areas are physically quite small inside and make it very difficult to add any more staff without getting in each other’s way. Beyond the size, is our focus on providing fresh food and drink as you order, rather than preparing food in advance and trying to keep it fresh over time. We do not want to serve cold or hard food and warm beer to you, so we train our staff to be as fast as possible with your orders. A common suggestion is to separate lines (ie. Cash vs Credit, Drinks vs Food, etc.), this is such a good suggestion that we have actually tried it in the past! A major fault of this idea is people getting in the wrong line and/or wanting something from the other line as well, causing our lines to slow down again or forcing the customer to go to the back of the line again. Last, is keeping things affordable. Many radical solutions, like expanding our kitchens or allowing multiple food carts to our games, come with a price tag for us, which would require us to raise our costs. Something no one wants.

So recognizing these challenges what can be done? Well we have not found a golden ticket to magically solve the problem. But we are making several changes while we continue to look for even more opportunities to improve.

We will continue to ensure we are fully staffed at all times. Already we increase our staff at all four locations on busier nights in hopes to move the lines faster. We will continue to bring in extra beer only stands on our heaviest nights to ensure those just wanting a drink will be able to get through lines faster. One suggestion we will put in action is improving menu signage so that while in line customers can make up their mind so that when it is their turn they can order faster. Also, we are looking for food options that can be served in different areas freeing up the concession areas for items that must be sold there.

I hope this has helped you better understand some of our complications and limitations for our concession stands and their lines as well as realize our commitment to making it better. If you have read this and thought of any other suggestions, we would love to hear from you! Often the best suggestions can come from people experiencing the problem. Also, if you haven’t taken our survey yet, please do! The link to the survey is below and you can enter to win a $25 gift card for the Bend Elks!

Thank you,

Kelsie Marick
Marketing & Sales
Owning Operator

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