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JRA reimagines Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory with new visitor experience

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The ultimate goal of the new tour is to share the spirit and personality of the product and brand
– Matthew Wheeler

The Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory – home of the official bat of Major League baseball – has introduced a new visitor experience at its factory with the help of JRA (Jack Rouse Associates).

The venue, which attracts around 300,000 visitors each year, gives them the chance to walk through the actual production line making bats for Major League Baseball players. The museum and factory are owned by Hillerich and Bradsby Co, which has been making the Louisville Slugger baseball bats since 1884.

Among the new developments is a three-and-a-half minute movie that transports guests to the forests and mills from where the wood for each Louisville Slugger bat is sourced. The new factory tour enables guests to learn about steps in the bat-making process that have never been shown before, including the custom spray process, pad printing and mini-bat production. Demonstrations on traditional "hand-turning", where the bat is carved on a lathe as was done in the 1880s, and "burn branding" – where bats are rolled over a 1,300-degree iron plate for branding – have been moved from the factory into the museum gallery.

A new experience is the Pro Player Billet Bin, which showcases the billets – not yet crafted bats – that are destined to be turned into baseball bats for star players. Guests can walk up to the shelves where these are stored and pull out the billets selected for their favourite players and teams.

The museum worked with JRA on planning the new tour experience, who provided writing and content development, exhibit design, graphic design, executive media production, project management and art direction for the renovation. The new pre-tour movie was directed, shot and produced by MoPics, while Schaefer Construction provided pre-construction, demolition and general contracting services on the project.

"The ultimate goal of the new tour is to share the spirit and personality of the product and brand through the factory's process and people," said JRA senior director Matthew Wheeler. "This authentic brand story is told in a contemporary and sensory way.

"With an enhanced storyline, media, lighting, environmental graphics, and technology, the new tour shares Louisville Slugger's rich history, while offering guests a look at its continued role in baseball's future."

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The Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory – home of the official bat of Major League Baseball – has introduced a new visitor experience at its factory with the help of JRA (Jack Rouse Associates).
VAT,HAM
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