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Happy Thursday and welcome to Rhode Map, your daily guide to everything happening in the Ocean State. I’m Dan McGowan and I say Gushers are the best back-to-school snack. Follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan or send tips to Dan.McGowan@globe.com.
The Pawtucket Red Sox have just one season left at McCoy Stadium, but nostalgia isn’t exactly getting more people to the ballpark.
With only the weekend left to play for this season, the PawSox are averaging just 5,126 fans a game, the third-lowest attendance in the International League. Only the Gwinnett Stripers and Syracuse Mets are seeing smaller crowds this year.
The team is leaving Pawtucket for Worcester beginning in 2021 after state leaders failed to come to terms on a deal to build a new stadium in Rhode Island. But attendance at McCoy has been shrinking for years.
In 2005, the PawSox averaged more than 9,500 fans a game, which was best in the league. Average attendance fell under 8,000 in 2012, and has declined nearly every year since. Only four teams in the league – Columbus, Lehigh Valley, Charlotte and Indianapolis – have averaged more than 8,000 fans this season.
In an email, PawSox vice president Dan Rea acknowledged the team “always realized that some small dip could be expected from a portion of our fan base,” but he suggested crowds have grown during the summer. The team is allowing kids ages 16 and under into McCoy for free for through Monday.
Rea also pointed to poor weather in the early part of the season as the culprit for the drop in attendance, as if it has never been cold and rainy in April in New England before.
As for next season, Rea said the team is committed to not cutting operations during its final year at McCoy.
NEED TO KNOW
Rhode Map wants to hear from you. If you’ve got a scoop or a link to an interesting news story in Rhode Island, e-mail us at RInews@globe.com.
• How’s this for sticker shock? The cost of a liquor license in Newport has swelled past $400,000. With two new hotels going up, there’s a movement to lift a 40-year-old freeze on new licenses. But some existing business owners are fighting to keep the cap in place.
• News out of Bristol: Amanda Milkovits reports the town’s Fourth of July parade committee has cut all ties with former chief marshals David E. Barboza and Raymond Gallison. As the Globe has reported, Barboza is accused of sexually abusing multiple boys. Gallison is serving time in federal prison for stealing from a dead man’s estate.
• We all know the cost of late-in-life care can be massive. My colleague Robert Weisman takes a look at how states are looking for new ways to pay for it as the population ages.
• “West Wing” fans, you can thank me later. Listen to this fascinating podcast about how the live debate in season seven was handled.
WHAT’S ON TAP TODAY
Each day, Rhode Map offers a cheat sheet breaking down what’s happening in Rhode Island. Have an idea? E-mail us at RInews@globe.com.
• Happening this morning: The State Planning Council meets this morning to consider funding cuts to future bike and pedestrian projects.
• If you’re a parent in Providence, you can get your kid a free back-to-school haircut all day long at the Nonviolence Institute on Oxford Street.
• In Cumberland tonight, the Town Council will meet in executive session to discuss Councilman Peter Bradley’s legal effort to block his removal as council president.
• Mayor Jorge Elorza will discuss Providence schools with members of the city’s School Community Advisory Board at Central High School between 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
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