Growing up, Mike Grace had a natural attraction to sports. His love for action, combined with his ability to turn every situation into a competition, made this Texas youngster a sports fan from the beginning.
Over the years, Grace turned his passion for sports into a dream of becoming a sportscaster. When the time came, he headed west to San Diego State to study journalism.
“I knew I wanted to go to school in San Diego, and I felt like at SDSU I was going to learn practical, real-world skills.”
Grace put those real-world skills to the test early. As a freshman, he became a member of the (Padres) Pad Squad. His first season in professional sports was a good one, to say the least, as the Padres made it to the World Series.
The Pad Squad introduced Grace to the game entertainment side of the industry, and it stuck.
“I understood the impact that game presentation had on the experience and especially the fans, and I really enjoyed that part of it.”
Working his way through the organization, Grace went from Pad Squad member to intern to part-time to full-time in 18 seasons with the club. As part of the game presentation team, Grace successfully helped create lifelong memories for fans..and for himself.
“I was part of Tony Gwynn’s retirement, the first game at Petco Park, and Trevor Hoffman’s 500th save,” said Grace. “I believe that the Seals’ inaugural home game is going to be of that magnitude for San Diego and the fans.”
Making the switch from baseball to box lacrosse, Grace is excited to work in an arena for the first time. With the freedom given by the National Lacrosse League to its teams, Grace is intrigued by the creativity of being able to control the lights, music and the entire atmosphere inside the building. The game itself will have you on the edge of your seat … or rising to your feet. As Grace says, “The game entertainment will greatly enhance an already exciting experience.”