Major League Baseball has set its overall theme night initiatives for the 2020 season, once again using a series of iconic pop culture brands to help drive attendance.
Core in next year’s plan is a return of Lucasfilm’s Star Wars franchise, which has the film Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker slated for release later this month. All 30 clubs will integrate Star Wars into a theme night or some type of in-stadium promotional giveaway during the course of next season. Such activities between various MLB clubs and Star Wars have occurred for more than a decade.
A similar effort will unfold with the popular US TV series Game of Thrones. Next year will represent the fourth season of integration with the series, and activiations will include a series of co-branded merchandise, and plans taking photos on the Iron Throne at MLB ballparks.
Two additional efforts will also comprise MLB’s Theme Night efforts for next year: a new one with the Sesame Workshop and a deepened tie with World Wresting Entertainment.
The Sesame Workshop tie will in part recognize the 50th anniversary of the iconic children’s program Sesame Street, and activations will include characters from that show making appearances at MLB ballparks.
MLB, meanwhile, will extend the WWE relationship scheduling more opportunities in and around baseball events for fans to also meet wrestling personalities.
“We are very excited to connect with an array of the most popular and culturally relevant entertainment brands that are interested in reaching the millions of baseball fans of all ages who attend MLB games throughout the year,” said Barbara McHugh, MLB senior vice president of marketing.
Specific dates and plans for each club for their respective Theme Nights will be finalized in the coming weeks and months, with a heightened degree of customization in individual markets compared to prior years of Theme Nights.
The moves come as MLB is seeking to reverse a multiyear attendance slide.