MILWAUKEE -- Miller Park will be renamed American Family Field starting Jan. 1, 2021, according to American Family Insurance.
The news of the name change came Tuesday, Jan. 21 -- almost a year after the Milwaukee Brewers and American Family Insurance announced a long-term agreement which included the naming rights for Miller Park beginning in 2021 — and continuing for 15 years.
The name American Family Field was a collaborative decision made by American Family and the Brewers. The ballpark logo and other branding elements will be announced later in 2020.
There was buzz inside Kelly's Bleachers after the news came down -- with fans weighing on the new name.
"I don't think it's going to be a fan favorite," said Jeff Kohnlein. "Too long. Doesn't flow. It's not quick like Miller Park. Miller Park is quick and easy. It's synonymous with the city of Milwaukee. It doesn't feel as Milwaukee as Miller Park, obviously, with Miller being here forever."
"That's the name of the field?" a fan asked. "It's way too long."
"I just don't like it," said Belinda Majsdorovic. "It was always County Stadium, and then it was Miller Park. OK, new stadium, new name. How do you change a name halfway through? It'd be like changing Lambeau Field. Can't."
Jack Salzwedel, American Family chair and executive officer issued the following statement on the renaming:
"The name American Family Field incorporates what we learned from fans, the Brewers and marketing research that included analysis of our brand and other sporting venue names."
"The name is short, simple and sweet with its alliteration of ‘Family’ and ‘Field’. The words ‘American Family’ capture our brand and reflect the family-orientated atmosphere that our research showed fans clearly value in the ballpark."
The partnership goes well beyond the naming rights to the ballpark. The Brewers and American Family Insurance will collaboratively fund community projects, including refurbishing youth and high school baseball fields. The two organizations will also work on marketing and promotional initiatives to enhance the fan and customer experience in both the stadium and in the community.
As part of the sponsorship agreement, American Family also acquired naming rights to the Brewers spring training complex in Maryvale, Arizona. The complex, which was extensively renovated in 2019, was named American Family Fields of Phoenix.
Miller Park was opened in 2001 and replaced Milwaukee County Stadium.