Team from Cleveland Advertising Agency Recess Creative Wins the First-Ever Tribe Hackathon with Augmented Reality App

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America’s favorite pastime just got a little cooler.

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The app plays with the concept of augmented reality, transforming your mobile device into an interactive encyclopedia of summertime’s most beloved game.

Local advertising agency Recess Creative today announced a first-place win at the Tribe Hackathon, the inaugural Cleveland Indians-sponsored competition.

Team Recess—also know as “The Alrighty Fielders”—consisted of lead technologist Chad Milburn, managing partner and CCO Tim Zeller, and art director AJ Jimenez. Over two weeks, this innovative squad put their technological prowess to the test—along with their CLE-centric expertise.

Milburn, a self-professed Tribe fanatic, caught wind of the competition via social media. The team invited tech-savvy locals to enrich the ballpark experience through the creation of mobile applications. Thirteen teams threw their hat in the ring to produce an application, culminating in a final presentation at Progressive Field on May 21.

“The Hackathon’s theme was to enhance the fan experience using a creative mindset and cool technology,” explained Milburn. “From there, we could build whatever we wanted.”

Dubbed “hARdball,” the winning app plays with the concept of augmented reality, transforming your mobile device into an interactive encyclopedia of summertime’s most beloved game. When a user faces his/her phone toward the gameplay, the app displays the players on the field, from that exact viewpoint. From there, users can discover players’ stats, at bat ball flight paths, batting music, and recent social media posts, interacting with the team in real-time.

The app mimics what you see on the field, creating a one-of-kind perspective. With so many spectators relying on cell phones for more in-depth game updates to supplement their ballpark experience, hARdball bridges the gap and brings them back into the game.

Catering to all tastes (quite literally), the app also provides a comprehensive, interactive map of the stadium’s eateries. Armed with location info, menus, and Yelp reviews, the app will guide you to your ideal ballpark meal.

After presenting hARball before a panel of judges, the team at Recess claimed the Grand Prize. The app’s enhancement of the ballpark experience focused primarily on a familiar concept: play.

“At Recess, we’re all about play,” said Zeller, “Every day we try to invent experiences that use the language of play to emotionally connect brands to their audiences.”

Through a whirlwind of press, signed Brantley jerseys, and a visit with Slider, the Recess team was reminded of what had united them in the first place.

“We knew we were a perfect fit for the challenge the second we heard about it,” said Jimenez. “We’re all huge Tribe fans and have been kicking around an idea like this for a while. The Hackathon was the perfect time to bring it to life.”

About Recess:
Recess Creative is a full-service digital advertising and integrated marketing agency based in downtown Cleveland. Right now we’re probably building a mobile app, designing a solid brand strategy or playing some kickball. You know, a typical day at the office. It’s our mission to invent experiences that use the language of play to emotionally connect brands to their audiences and deliver results. Our clients include KeyBank, SONY Pictures Television, The Cleveland Airport System, Cleveland Water, Iron Chef Marc Forgione and MTD Products. For more information or to contact Recess Creative, visit http://www.RecessCreative.com.

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Chris Jungjohann
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