Job pitches open up at Valley Strong Ballpark amidst Tulare County’s noteworthy economic expansion in the state
VISALIA – Visalia Rawhide has announced a slew of job openings to get all hands on deck for the 2023 baseball season, which will be up for grabs at the ballpark’s annual job fair.
The event is set for Feb. 25 at the Valley Strong Ballpark, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Anyone looking for work can seize a slot amongst 150 to 200 concessions positions including cooks, bartenders, runners, ticket office staff, ushers, guest relations, retail and more. All positions are seasonal, but according to Visalia Rawhide director of community relations Joe Ross, the opportunity is a great way to cash in on some extra money and experience.
“If somebody comes in here with a great attitude and is smiley and energetic, those are the people that we want to have on the front lines,” Ross said.
For the event, people must fill out an application prior to the fair and are encouraged to bring a resume if possible. The application can be found on the Visalia Rawhide social media pages like Facebook and Instagram, where it can be filled out at the link provided on both pages. Ross also recommended bringing some drinking water to sip on during the event, as the concessions stand will not be available
“Realistically, other than having to stand in line and wait to talk to somebody, it’s a really simple, easy process,” Ross said.
At the job fair, Ross said people who enter the ballpark will be separated into two lines, as they are either applying for concessions or everything else. Aside from concessions, other positions include working in the ballpark’s baseball grounds crew.
After that, he said people will go into the Hall of Fame club for a brief interview with the supervisor of the desired position. Once it’s sorted out who is likely to be considered for hire, the lucky applicants should get an email somewhere down the line with information on their job orientation. Overall, Ross said it’s about a 10 to 15 minute process when someone actually sits down for their interview.
“We try to tell our staff, you’re going to know pretty quickly if you’re going to want to hire somebody,” Ross said. “There are going to be hundreds of people here that we kind of have to try to funnel in the two hour window that we have.”
This slew of job opportunities were announced on the cusp of the 2023 Annual Sequoia Regional Summit on Feb. 10, featuring Dr. Christopher Thornburg of Beacon Economics. Beacon Economics is an independent research and consulting firm dedicated to making accurate, insightful and objectively-based analysis on the economy.
As reported at the summit, Tulare County and the Central Valley are doing well in the economic development department – better than their coastal counterparts, even. Thornberg described the county as uniquely situated midway through the state to bring the state’s economy what it needs: more willing workers, outdoor amenities, available land and affordable housing. Although politicians in Sacramento have given the Valley’s reputation some downplay, it – and Tulare County – have continued to fuel the economy with added jobs.
Although Tulare County lost 14,000 jobs during the pandemic, it has more than recovered them by adding nearly 19,000 jobs since April 2020. Tulare County’s unemployment rate is hanging at 9%, much higher than the state’s rate, but not far off from a record low of 8.2% in 2006. Job growth in the county was led by the transportation, warehousing and utilities sector, which added over 2,000 jobs since February 2020. Leisure and hospitality added 1,600 jobs and construction, education and health care each added more than 1,000 jobs.
This year, Ross said he and other Visalia Rawhide directors are expecting a good turnout for this year’s job fair. Although prior years have always yielded a good number of people seeking job opportunities, he said the response received from the social media postings about the hirings was impressive; so the ballpark is hopeful for an even stronger turnout for 2023.
Although it is not certain when the job slots will be filled, the positions will be determined before the start of the season on April 6. The first day of the season will be on the road for an away game, but the first home opener of the season is set for April 11 with first pitch at 6:30 p.m. For any additional information on purchasing tickets, or for promotions, interested parties can visit rawhidebaseball.com.