Dave Heller is also the president of Main Street Baseball, LLC, and co-owner with his friend Bob Herrfeldt, of The Quad Cities River Bandits, the Single-A affiliate of the 2006 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals, located in Davenport, Iowa. Heller also sits on the board of directors of the Midwest League.
Under the pair’s leadership, the River Bandits have sparked a renewed interest in baseball in the Quad Cities. After selling naming rights to Modern Woodmen of America in a $4.5 million deal, Heller and Herrfeldt set about improving the 78-year old ballpark. They added many fun and exciting new features, including a hot tub, tiki bar and lounge, 80-foot long high-definition ribbon-board, concourse-level loge boxes, and a corn field from which the players are introduced! Newly renamed Modern Woodmen Park was voted the Midwest Leagues best ballpark by Baseball America and earned a five-star rating from BallparkDigest.com.
Since taking over, sponsorship sales, suite sales, ticket sales, and concession sales are all up significantly over the previous season; average per-game attendance in the first year under Heller increased by more than 56%, the largest such increase in Minor League Baseball. The River Bandits have also led one of sports most successful rebranding campaigns merchandise sales increased more than 400% over the previous season, sponsorships increased more than 64% and CNBC named the teams primary logo one of the top eight logos in all of minor league baseball.
And, of course, the team’s TV and radio advertising were each awarded “Best in Baseball” by the folks at BallparkDigest.com.