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Fireflies implementing clear bag policy in 2019.

The Columbia Fireflies are implementing a clear bag policy for the 2019 season, and parking plans have changed at some Segra Park sites following the announcement of a 20,000-square-foot REI Co-op outdoor outfitters store being built atBullStreet.

General parking and state lot parking lots are largely unchanged, though Gregg Street, which connects Calhoun Street to Colonial Drive, will be open to through traffic. The state lots on the north side of Colonial Drive will be a secondary parking location, while certain lots occupied during the day by government agencies will be open to fans an hour to an hour and half before weekday games.

All general parking costs $4, with complimentary shuttle service to the main plaza available from the general and state lots.

There will be additional, first-come, first-served street parking along Gregg, Barnwell and Saunders streets. ADA-compliant parking will be along the first base side of Segra Park, accessible from the Calhoun Street entrance at Barnwell Street.

The Fireflies open the 2019 season on Thursday against the Charleston RiverDogs.

"Segra Park has plenty of parking for the great crowds we expect on opening night and throughout the spring and summer," said Fireflies President John Katz."The process of getting to the ballpark is simple and convenient. We will have attendants at and around each lot, as well as signage to direct fans to the best parking place at the time they arrive."

The Soda Cap Connector operates for every home game. Beginning one hour before first pitch, fans can catch buses from Main Street and Hampton Street for free. Buses run every 25 minutes and continue until one hour after the game.

The Fireflies' clear bag policy is similar to those in place at all University of South Carolina sporting events. Each fan will be allowed one clear bag, plus a clutch or small purse approximately the size of a hand without a strap or handle. Medically necessary items and diaper bags will be allowed after inspection and tagging. Briefcases, computer bags, binocular cases, camera bags, backpacks and fanny packs are not permitted.

The team will have a clear bag giveaway on opening night for the first 2,000 fans in attendance.

"The safety of everyone attending events at Segra Park is paramount to us, and that's why we are implementing this new policy," Katz said. "These security measures have become standard fare at many sports and entertainment venues across the country and are quite comparable to policies already in place at venues in Columbia."

The Fireflies' 2019 roster features five of the New York Mets' top 10 prospects as ranked by Baseball America, including infielder Ronny Mauricio, the Mets' third-best prospect. The Class A Fireflies also will open the season with infielders Mark Vientos (No. 4) and Shervyen Newton (No. 7), along with pitchers Simeon Woods-Richardson (No. 8) and Thomas Szapucki (No. 10).

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Publication:Columbia Regional Business Report
Date:Apr 1, 2019
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