Sunday, July 23, 2000

Need work? Paul Brown's hiring

By Reid Forgrave
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Tom Coby and his four kids love to scoot on down to the old ball yard for a Reds or Bengals game. But they don't sit together.

        In fact, they don't sit at all.

        Mr. Coby, his two sons and two daughters are five of the 2,000 new Aramark concessionaires at Paul Brown Stadium. Aramark is still looking to fill 200 to 400 more positions.

        The Cobys have made beer and peanut-hawking a family tradition. On more than one occasion, at Reds or Bengals games in Cinergy Field, the Northside family members have all been stationed in the same section.

        “When you're vending, you're part of the team. And if the Reds win the World Series, I can say, "Yeah, I was at the stadium,'” said Tom, 44, whose days as a beer vendor at Reds games dates to 1988. The wife and kids would come to games, he said, and they thought dad's job was cool.

        “After working a regular job during the day, you get to the ballpark, and it's like a load off your shoulders,” he said.

        Sports Services has the vending contract for Cinergy Field, but Aramark won the Paul Brown Stadium contract this year. For two weeks, Aramark has had a trailer set up near the field recruiting for positions that pay between $7 and $15 an hour plus tips.

        Many of the vending jobs have been filled by either nonprofit groups or through recruitment, said Mike England of Aramark. But plenty of jobs remain.

        The hiring trailer has had a constant flow of applicants for the past two weeks.

        Bob Boettcher, 46, of Sharonville, has been a Bengals fan forever — he remembers going to games when they played at University of Cincinnati's Nippert Stadium. Last week he applied for a vending position.

        The applicants are excited about working at the newest thing in town, said Aramark human resources representative Laura Leine.

        Kenneth Huntley of Madisonville was the baby in a family with 10 brothers and sisters. When he applied last week, he said he was used to getting food and drinks for people.

        Missy Coby, a nursing student at the University of Cincinnati, loves hustling beer. Last year, she worked 85 Reds and Bengals games, making $3,000 plus tips and covering her college tuition. She has made as much as $200 in one game, although she has had her bad days.

        The Aramark hiring trailer, on Mehring Way between Paul Brown Stadium and the Ohio River, is accepting applications from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the week and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekends.


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