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Dodgers Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

The Los Angeles Dodgers announced today that the club will celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month through various events and promotions including Viva Los Dodgers Day and Kellogg’s® Frosted Flakes® Hispanic Heritage Family Day tomorrow (1:10 p.m. vs. STL) and La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers (TBD vs. COL) on Saturday, September 29. Hispanic Heritage Month is a four-week long national celebration September 15 – October 15.

“Our Latino fans and every single one of our fans are top of mind year-round,” said Dodger President and CEO Stan Kasten. “We do want to take this opportunity, however, to express our pride in the Dodgers’ history and future in Latin America and the countless Latino Dodgers past and present that have made an impact on the game and on this city.”

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In celebration of Hispanic Heritage month, the Dodgers are offering fans a $9 Reserve Level ticket, discounted more than 40 percent, for Viva Los Dodgers Day and Hispanic Heritage Family Day tomorrow and for La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers Saturday, September 29. Fans can access this ticket offer at www.dodgers.com/viva and www.losdodgers.com/viva.

The Dodgers will also offer fans 20 percent off Dodger player tees ($28) that feature the name and number of select Latino Dodgers – Adrian Gonzalez, Andre Ethier and Hanley Ramirez. Discounted Gonzalez, Ethier and Ramirez player tees can be purchased for the remainder of the regular season at the Field and Loge level team stores on game days and at the Top of the Park gift shop Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Viva Los Dodgers Day, presented by State Farm, Chevrolet and Time Warner Cable, begins at 11 a.m. tomorrow. Grammy-nominated and Latin Grammy-winning band Los Amigos Invisibles and the Boogaloo Assassins will perform. Also, Kellogg’s® Frosted Flakes® Hispanic Heritage Family Day will celebrate more than 140 years of Latino contributions to baseball. The first 30,000 fans in attendance tomorrow will receive a Nomar Garciaparra booklet commemorating Latino contributions to Major League Baseball. Additionally, Kellogg’s will be showcasing a commercial documenting a clinic held by Garciaparra for under-privileged children and Tony the Tiger will make an appearance at Viva Los Dodgers Day. Viva Los Dodgers Day is the Dodgers’ season-long initiative that celebrates Latino culture in Los Angeles with a family-friendly pre-game festival prior to every Sunday home game.

Monday afternoon, Dodger fans will be treated to a Twitter chat with Fernando Valenzuela. Valenzuela will answer questions for 30 minutes on the club’s official Twitter, @Dodgers, at approximately 3 p.m. PT. This marks the legendary lefty’s first social media appearance and the Dodgers’ first bilingual Twitter chat as fans can submit questions in both English and Spanish.

The Dodgers will launch the #VivaLosDodgers Creative Answer Contest on the club’s official Facebook and Twitter accounts. Dodger fans will be invited to submit, in 34 words or less, why they should meet Valenzuela and the entire Dodgers’ Spanish-language broadcast team including Hall of Famer Jaime Jarrín and Pepe Yñiguez. Fans can submit their entries via Twitter using the hashtag #VivaLosDodgers or at www.Facebook.com/Dodgers. Entries will be judged on creativity, originality and consistency with the Dodgers’ Hispanic Heritage theme. The #VivaLosDodgers Contest will run from September 17 - 26 with the winner being invited to join the club’s Spanish-language broadcast team in the booth on September 29.

The Los Angeles Dodgers will present their 15th annual Hispanic Heritage celebration La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers presented Coca-Cola, Chevrolet, and Time Warner on Saturday, September 29 four hours prior to the TBD game against Colorado. La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers is the culmination of a season-long series of family-friendly events celebrating Latino culture in Los Angeles.

This season’s event will pay tribute to Dodger coach Manny Mota’s 33rd season as a coach, 43rd year with Los Angeles and his 50 year-long career in Major League Baseball. La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers will include live music from Boogaloo Assasins, Kinky, Ozokidz and Los Cuates de Sinaloa. Dodger players will make appearances and sign autographs. The Dodgers’ Spanish-language broadcast team – Hall of Famer Jaime Jarrín, Fernando Valenzuela and Pepe Yñiguez – will greet fans on stage and sign autographs. The family-friendly festival will feature a Latino baseball history memorabilia display, interactive areas provided by various Dodger sponsors, car displays and a kids’ zone.

As part of Hispanic Heritage month, Valenzuela will play host to a group of 40 Los Angeles-area youth at the game on September 29 and will meet the group on the field for a photo opportunity and to sign autographs. The youngsters will be treated to tickets, a Dodgers T-shirt and a meal voucher.

The Dodgers’ current roster includes several Latin American-born players – Bobby Abreu (Aragua, Venezuela), Ronald Belisario (Maracay, Venezuela), Luis Cruz (Navojoa, Sonora, Mexico), Elian Herrera (San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic), Hanley Ramirez (Samana, Dominican Republic), Juan Rivera (Guarenas, Venezuela) and Juan Uribe (Palenque, Dominican Republic). The Dodgers’ current roster also includes Latinos of Cuban descent, Alex Castellanos and Paco Rodriguez, and of Mexican descent, Andre Ethier, Jerry Hairston Jr. and Adrian Gonzalez.

The Dodgers have played a major role historically in player development in Latin America and have recommitted substantial resources in Latin American player signings. In June, Los Angeles signed Cuban outfielder Yasiel Puig (Cienfuegos, Cuba) and signed both its Cuban-born draft picks, left-handers Onelki Garcia (Guantanamo, Cuba) and Alfredo Unzue (Ciego de Avila, Cuba) and non-drafted free agent catcher Selme Angulo (Holguin, Cuba). In July, the Dodgers signed pitchers Lenix Osuna (Guasave, Sonora, Mexico), Victor Gonzalez (Tuxpan, Nayarit, Mexico) and William Soto (Punto Fijo, Falcon, Venezuela) catcher Julian Leon (Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico) and short stop Christian Gomez (Nizao, Peravia, Dominican Republic). In August, the Dodgers signed pitcher Julio Urias (Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico).

The Dodgers were the first MLB club to implement a Spanish-language radio broadcast in 1958, which is now the longest running in all of baseball. The Dodgers recently announced that the club’s Spanish-language broadcast team will return for the 2013 season. Broadcasters Jarrín, Yñiguez and color commentator Valenzuela can be heard on Univision America KTNQ 1020 AM Los Angeles. The team broadcasts the Dodgers’ 162 regular season games, eight Spring Training games and all potential postseason games. The Dodgers 2012 regular season broadcast schedule includes 50 games made available in Spanish by PRIME TICKET. This is the third season in which PRIME TICKET has offered Spanish-language programming and it features play-by-play announcer Jorge Jarrín and legendary Dodger coach Manny Mota, now in his third season as a Dodger Spanish-language TV broadcaster.

Forty percent of Dodger fans are Latino and each season the Dodgers host nearly one million Latino fans. The Dodgers currently rank second in web traffic among MLB teams with Spanish-language web sites and third among MLB teams with a Spanish-speaking registered user base. The Dodgers’ official Spanish-language web site is www.losdodgers.com and the club’s official Spanish-language Twitter handles are @JaimeJarrinHOF and @PepeYniguez.

The Dodgers will commemorate Hispanic Heritage month through the end of the regular season with pre-game and in-game tributes and entertainment. Further details on La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers will be announced in addition to other meet-and-greets, appearances and social media promotions.

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