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MetroPCS 'Connects' with 18,000 at Maryland Zoo

Back-to-School Event Breaks Attendance Record

Ursula V. Battle, The Baltimore Times | 8/23/2013, 10:15 a.m.
MetroPCS "connected" with thousands of Maryland residents after taking over the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.
A steady stream of people passed through the gates of the Maryland Zoo throughout the day. A record breaking crowd of 18,000 attended the event. (Chad Sour/The Baltimore Times)

MetroPCS “connected” with thousands of Maryland residents after taking over the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. On Tuesday, August 20, 2013, the no-contract wireless leader celebrated the final days of summer break by offering free admission to the public. MetroPCS also partnered with Elev8 to provide a backpack full of school supplies to over 100 students in the program, which offers a variety of services to ensure students succeed in life.

The event drew a record-breaking attendance of 18,000, who traveled from all over the state to take advantage of the free admission and to enjoy a late summer outing before the start of the school year. The previous single-day attendance record at the Zoo was 8,000.

“I traveled here from Harford County with my children and the children in my daycare,” said Shakira Belton. “It is a fun day for the children before school starts. I heard about the event on the radio. The fact that it was free was perfect. I am also going to look into their wireless plan. It sounds very affordable.”

According to MetroPCS, it covered the admission cost of all of the attendees, and sought to celebrate its nationwide 4G service launch in Baltimore through the event.

“This event exceeded our expectations,” said John C. Shelton, Vice President/Regional General Manager of MetroPCS Baltimore/Washington. “We never expected to see so many people. Clearly, today has been a big hit. The weather is perfect, and this event provides a great opportunity to get students out and re-energized for the school year.”

Founded in 1876, The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore is the third oldest zoo in the United States and is internationally known for its contributions in conservation and research. Situated in Druid Hill Park, over 1,500 animals are represented in the Zoo’s varied natural habitats.

“When we were planning this event, we looked at all of the venue possibilities that were out there,” said Shelton. “We selected the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore due to location, accessibility, convenience, size, and ability to accommodate large crowds. It worked out perfectly. We are ecstatic. Our partnership with the Zoo has been first class.”

The event took place from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. with a steady stream of Zoo visitors entering

the Zoo gates throughout the day. MetroPCS also offered the first 200 visitors to the Zoo

with “MetroPCS’ VIP” Zoo experience. The Zoo’s ‘early birds’ were granted with special access

to an exclusive area full of refreshments and special take home gifts.

According to MetroPCS, it has grown to the #1 no annual contract wireless network brand in the majority of the markets it serves by offering convenience, choice and flexibility for consumers. A flagship brand operated by T-Mobile US, Inc., MetroPCS products and services are available online and across the United States through a network of company-owned stores, authorized dealer locations, and leading national retailers.

“The event also provides an opportunity for us to tell our story about what we are offering in our ‘$40, period’ rate plan,” said Shelton. “We wanted to put our imprint in the Baltimore marketplace. People can’t believe we have a $40 data, talk, and text plan with no hidden fees, but we do. They want to know ‘what’s the catch’? There is no catch. Today, we have booths set-up to hand out materials about our plans, and where people can sign-up. Our market is not age restrictive – it’s value conscious.”

Shelton added, “We are focused on the metropolitan market. Baltimore City and Baltimore County is where we want to be.

“We also want to give back to the community.”

Nancy Hinds is Executive Vice President of Institutional Advancement for the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.

“We were happy that MetroPCS decided to have this event at the Maryland Zoo,” said Hinds. “This was our biggest crowd ever. It’s unbelievable. We thank MetroPCS for making it all happen.”

For more information, visit www.metropcs.com.