By David Saltzer AngelsWin.com Senior Writer -
Angels fans who have been to the stadium this season have noticed a new concession stand in Angels Stadium. It’s the Oakley Store, located in Section 113 the first Oakley store in any stadium anywhere. Yes, it’s the first—we even beat the Yankees in getting an Oakley store!
If you are like me, and grew up in Orange County, Oakley sunglasses are well known to you. However, if you are not, Oakley sunglasses provide lens curvature and optical clarity—both designed to give a snug fit and perfect vision while playing sports or driving a car. They manufacture sunglasses for the military, and are often worn by professional athletes and shooters because of the enhanced vision that they provide.
What I didn’t know is just how tough their lenses are. While attending the Grand Opening, one of the sales clerks provided a demonstration. First he took out a display board show the impact on the lenses by an object from 5 feet. The next showed the impact of a pellet on the lenses. And the last one showed the impact from a shotgun blast on the lenses.
But that wasn’t enough for the sales clerk to “fully” demonstrate how resilient the lenses are. So, he took out a brand new set of lenses and a mallet. After giving a good grin, he proceeded to pound the lens on the ground with the mallet (who hasn’t wanted to do that?). When he picked it up, there was NO DAMAGE! Last year, Angels fans may remember that MVP Miguel Cabrera was hit in the face when a ball took a bad hop. Now I know why many people credit the Oakley sunglasses that he wore that day with saving his vision. Those things are TOUGH!
For fans looking for more than sunglasses, Oakley has a complete sports lineup. Look at the photos in the video below. They have some incredible hats, shirts, sweatshirts, wallets, watches (yes, that’s me trying on a watch), backpacks and more. They have unique Angels gear and Oakley gear. As they ramp up their MLB license with the Angels, they will be rolling out more and more new products, so check out the store regularly for new products.
Aside from all the sick gear (several of the Angels shirts and the red Titanium watch are on my wish list), four things really stood out about the Oakley store. First, if you have ever wanted to customize your sunglasses you can at this store. Have a specific need with your sunglasses, you can make it happen with the help of an associate to customize your own look and lens. Want a pair of red and white Angels-themed sunglasses, you can get them here!
Second, want to make the sunglasses truly your own? That’s easy, get them etched at the Oakley store. With an etcher on site (the only one outside of their headquarters), Angels fans can get their lenses etched with their name or with an Angels “A” logo on it! Better yet, order your sunglasses during the game and a sales associate will bring them out to you to wear in your seats! Same day service!
Third, Oakley is a responsible corporation. Knowing that many servicemen wear Oakley eyewear, Oakley created the Infinite Hero Foundation, an organization that supports veterans facing service-related mental and physical issues. They also created a unique line of products, which can be seen in the video (mostly purple and gray near the 1:14 mark), which are sold in the Oakley Store, which goes to support the foundation. Aside from looking good, these products go to support a worthwhile cause.
As an Angels fan, I’m excited about the Oakley store for many reasons. I see this as the future for Angels stadium. I asked Tim Mead, the Angels Vice President of Communications, about the Oakley Store and he said “We are pleased to be providing our fans with a quality experience at the ballpark.” I could not agree more, and hope that the Angels continue to add more branded and unique stores to the stadium to enhance the ballpark experience. Fans will stay at the stadium longer and will find a greater value for their entertainment dollar.
During the Grand Opening, two Angels players, Howie Kendrick and Mark Trumbo, stopped by to talk about their experiences wearing Oakley products. I was able to interview both and even snuck in some baseball questions.
Click below to listen to the interview with Howie Kendrick.
Click below to listen to the interview with Mark Trumbo.
If you haven’t taken the time to check out the Oakley Store in the stadium, be sure to do so on your next visit to the stadium. As you head into the stadium behind home plate, turn left, and it will be just past the Section 113 sign. You won’t miss it. The buzz surrounding the store will draw you in and you will see an entirely different experience than you have had so far at Angels Stadium.