Ok Staten Island! You spoke, and your Staten Island baseball team listened. After an extensive community engagement and voting process, the Island’s new Atlantic League professional baseball team will be called the Staten Island FerryHawks!
The FerryHawk name was selected from over 2,000 names submitted by fans as part of a contest launched earlier this year by Staten Island Entertainment , the owners of the team. The names were narrowed down to seven finalists for initial fan voting, and then ultimately three. The other two names in the finals were Dragon Slayers and Harbor Heroes.
So, what is a FerryHawk? According to officials at SIE, a FerryHawk “is a fun-loving, baseball-playing superhero that combines the power, toughness and persistence of the Staten Island Ferry and the red-tailed and cooper’s hawks that are seen around Staten Island.”
FUN FACT: A red-tailed hawk has great vision and can fly up to 120 miles per hour. (Think Rickey Henderson base-stealing speed).
Staten Island is a great borough, full of common sense and hard-working New Yorkers who love their community, love to have fun and deserve a world class year-round entertainment venue,” said SIE partner John Catsimatidis. “The symbols of Staten Island, the hawk, the Verrazano Bridge and the ferry, will last in people’s minds forever. Staten Island, get ready for some awesome promotions and entertainment.
The FerryHawks team is an endeavor of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and SIE. The team was officially announced in August, after last year’s cancellation of the Staten Island Yankees minor league baseball team. NYCEDC negotiated the deal with SIE, who signed a lease in July of 2021 to take over the closed Richmond County Ballpark stadium and organize and operate an Atlantic League franchise.
The team will be based at the Staten Island Ballpark, previously called the Richmond County Ballpark, in St. George.
Over the summer, baseball legend Dwight Gooden was on hand at the ballpark to help officials celebrate the return of professional baseball to the borough.
Eric Shuffler, SIE president, said the team will be looking to the community once again for input on a new mascot and other ballpark fun.
“The fan input has been tremendous and decisive in this process. We are going to provide the community with more chances to help develop the FerryHawk brand,” Shuffler said in a press release. “Stay tuned for more community input around the mascot and ballpark amenities.”
According to SIE, the FerryHawks brand will be the anchor of a larger vision to turn the ballpark into a community-focused, year-round sports and entertainment arena offering baseball, youth and amateur sports, concerts, festivals and community activities.
The FerryHawks will begin playing in April 2022 in the Atlantic League, an official partner of Major League Baseball.