INTRODUCTION: The Montreal Olympic Stadium, which was built despite enormous financial and labour difficulties, has eventually been let to a distillery owned baseball team.
GV People arriving at Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Canada
SV Sign "Expos"
GV INT Stadium with drum majorettes on pitch and balloons in sky
GV ZOOM IN TO CU Mayor Drapeau of Montreal shaking hands with Expos team
MCU Expos club owner and stadium tenant Charles Bronfman standing
GV Philadelphia Phillies baseball team lined up
GV Expos baseball team lined up
GV Crowd applauds
GV Expos batsman hitting ball and running
GV Phillies pitcher throwing Expos player
GV PAN Stadium and crowd PAN TO play in progress
TV Stadium PAN TO crowd and play in progress
GV Expos player hits ball and is caught
SPORT: OLYMPIC STADIUM/BASEBALL
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The Montreal Olympic Stadium, which was built despite enormous financial and labour difficulties, has eventually been let to a distillery owned baseball team. For the next three years the stadium will be the home ground for the Montreal Expos.
SYNOPSIS: On Friday (15 April) a new era for the Olympic Stadium opened with the team's first game on their new base. The match, which was against the Philadelphia Phillies, drew a crowd of more than fifty-seven thousand. At the moment the stadium can seat sixty thousand, and that figure will be increased when the temporary stands are opened up.
The guest of honour on the opening day was Mayor Drapeau of Montreal who was so closely involved with the troubles surrounding the construction of the Olympic facilities. Charles Bronfman, the head of the distillery company and the owner of the Expos team, was also there to see his team line up against their opponents.
The Bronfmans bought the Montreal Expos in 1968, and last year they entered into an agreement to lease the stadium from the Olympic Installations Board for the team. The lease lasts for three years and it will cost the team two hundred thousand dollars (GBP116,279 sterling) a year.
The team's holding company also have complete control over the trade concessions in the stadium, including hot-dog stands and beer sales. They will also control and benefit from the advertising inside and outside the stadium. Just the advertising that appears on the electronic scoreboard is expected to produce a hundred thousand dollars (GBP58,000 sterling) for the Government in tax off revenue earned.
Despite the atmosphere of a gala occasion, the Montreal fans were denied the additional pleasure of seeing their team win the big match on the opening day. They were beaten 7-2 by the Philadelphians. But the crowd still seemed to enjoy the match and the stadium.