The Ravens' Training Camp autograph policy created conversation for many fans. Here are our answers to questions raised today:
Q: Why did we change the autograph policy?A:Our own security, along with the security company we have hired at Training Camp and the NFL, had advised us the last two years to change our policy. While we have not had a major incident with injury, a number of children did suffer minor injuries. Safety is the major factor for the change. With limited space and availability of players, it is important for us to focus on children and make sure they have the opportunity to receive an autograph.
Q: Where do I pick up an autograph wristband for my child?
A:Autograph wristbands can be picked up at the autograph tent in the Fan Zone adjacent to the practice fields.
Q: Does my child need to be present for me to pick up an autograph wristband?
A:Yes. A Ravens-issued autograph wristband will be placed on the child at the time of receipt.
Q: What time does my child need to get in line to receive an autograph?
A:Children can begin lining up in the designated autograph area 20 minutes before the conclusion of the morning practice.
Q: What time can I pick up an autograph wristband for my child?A:Wristbands can be picked up when the Fan Zone opens and 10 minutes subsequent to conclusion of the scheduled morning practice.
Q: Is there a limit to the number of autograph wristbands that will be given out?
A:At this time, there is no limit to the number of wristbands. All children ages 6 through 15 will have an opportunity to receive a wristband.
Q: What happens if my child wants to leave the autograph area early?
A:All children may leave the designated autograph area at any time. However, there will be no re-entry to the autograph area.
Q: What is the age range for children allowed in the autograph area?
A:All children ages 6 through 15 with Ravens-issued wristbands will be permitted in the designated autograph area. We selected this age group after speaking with teachers and parents.
Q: Will Ravens Rookies be the only kids allowed into the autograph area?
A:No. All children ages 6 through 15 with Ravens-issued wristbands will be permitted in the designated autograph area.
Q: Will there be supervision in the autograph area to help younger children who might become overwhelmed by older children?A:Yes. Ravens staff and security will monitor the autograph area and help to facilitate children in the autograph process. Those children who display disorderly conduct will be asked to leave and barred from the autograph area throughout Training Camp.
Q: What will the Ravens do for fans with disabilities or special needs?
A:The Ravens cater to the special needs of our fans throughout the year and will continue to do so at Training Camp. We will have a designated autograph area for children 6 through 15 with special needs. If needed, those children with special needs will be allowed to have a guardian accompany them to the autograph area.
Q: Will there still be a separate Ravens Rookies section?
A:No. All children ages 6 through 15 with a Ravens-issued wristband will be permitted in the designated autograph area.
Q: Since autographs are for all children, why should I sign my child up for the Ravens Rookies Club this year?
A:The Ravens Ultimate Rookie Membership is a fun-filled membership program that provides its members with an exclusive Ravens Rookies gift pack, two free, large one-topping pizzas from Papa John's, special discounts, and most importantly, special event invitations throughout the year that will only cater to Ravens Rookies. For example, Ravens Rookies recently attended an exclusive autograph meet-and-greet with the entire Ravens 2010 draft class.
Q: Are there special opportunities for PSL owners to receive an autograph at Training Camp?A:We did discuss having a PSL owner-only practice, and for the present, decided not to do this. One of the things we like about our training camp at McDaniel College is that it's free and open to all fans. We are only out at McDaniel for 3½ weeks, and already have days when fans cannot attend. Our PSL owners represent 65,000 tickets. If even one-third came to a PSL-owner day, we could not handle the crowd or autograph demand.
It should be noted that most of our players are out in our community on a regular basis year-round, and we are proud of that, too. This provides other opportunities to get player autographs. Plus, our Spring Football Festival, which had to be cancelled this past spring due to stadium construction, will continue to be an annual event featuring over approximately 20 players at autograph sessions.
View the press release detailing the Ravens' autograph policy and comments from team president Dick Cass.