Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Pink Taco Stadium: What the...? [J. Mark English]

Louie Villalobos, The Arizona Republic -

First, it shook up the Scottsdale establishment.
Now, the family behind the Pink Taco restaurant chain is rattling the Cardinals' cage.
Would you believe Pink Taco Stadium?
That's what the Morton family, famous for creating the Hard Rock Café and Morton's Steakhouse, is saying they want to name Cardinals Stadium.
They are offering $30 million as evidence of their commitment and are promising to pursue an agreement with the Arizona Cardinals.
One problem: The Cardinals, who control the Glendale stadium's naming rights, say they want no part of the name.
Harry Morton, president and CEO of Pink Taco, said his group is prepared to use the deal for $30 million over 10 years as a starting point for negotiations. Morton said Monday that his company has the "edge and cachet" that would help elevate the team's profile with a younger demographic.
He also said he would consider calling the $455 million venue Morton Stadium, provided the Pink Taco menu was prominent throughout the venue.
"We will not be the same old, boring corporate naming-rights partner," Morton said during a news conference. "We will deliver celebrity."
The family said it offered the Cardinals a $5 million good-faith check during a meeting last week to show that it is serious.
The Cardinals, however, took the presentation as a joke and dismissed Monday's news conference as a publicity stunt. "There is zero chance of this happening," said Mark Dalton, director of media relations for the Cardinals. "We are in serious and legitimate naming-rights discussion with several companies. This is not one of them."