The Seattle Mariners and the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe unveiled the revamped Diamond Club, a premium dining and seating area behind home plate at T-Mobile Park on Wednesday, March 29.
The renovation brings the space to 13,000 square feet, including upgrades to its kitchen, restrooms and seating. It’s designed to accommodate 408 people. The Muckleshoot Indian Tribe has teamed up with the Mariners as partners in the glitzy new Diamond Club.
Honoring the Tribe’s culture and acknowledging the fact that T-Mobile Field stands on part of Muckleshoot’s ancestral homeland, the club will display photos and art installations from Tribal members, as well as featuring cultural cuisine from the tribe.
“The Muckleshoot Diamond Club is a unique way to honor our everlasting and on-going place as both the original people of and a cultural anchor for this region and land,” Muckleshoot Vice Chairman Donny Stevenson said in a news release. “We are so incredibly thankful and excited to be able to share this distinctive experience with the Seattle Mariners.”
The debut of the Muckleshoot Diamond Club came a day before the team’s winning home opener against the Cleveland Guardians.“We’re excited to honor and celebrate the Muckleshoot tribe’s rich culture and Seattle heritage with our fans at T-Mobile Park,” said Catie Griggs, president of business operations, in the release. “This is just the beginning of an incredible partnership that our community will see come to life over the next several months.” Donny Stevenson then gave the following remarks, which will be quoted in full:
“I’m excited to be here on this beautiful day. The opportunity for the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe to share time and space with a team and an organization as high quality as the Seattle Mariners is something that we couldn’t be more happy about, or more proud to represent – particularly as it relates to the time and space that we’ll be having an opportunity to look at today.
When you take a step back from this day, and this opportunity, it’s incredibly important for the tribe to be able to assert our place amongst the city of Seattle and, as the first peoples of this region, it’s truly meaningful for us to be able to put our name, and our community, and our people, forward in a good way – in a meaningful way – in a space that represents what we refer to ourselves as – the biggest and the best.
And this unique opportunity has come about with a group that we couldn’t be happier to be engaged with. The Seattle Mariners are the most exciting sports franchise that the city has seen over the last year or so. The return to its winning tradition and to the playoffs last season was just so meaningful to the entire region, to every sports fan in the Pacific Northwest, and that certainly extends to Indigenous people in the region – particularly the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe.
I’ve grown up here my whole life as one of the first people of this region, and the Mariners are a team that’s incredibly meaningful and has always had a special place in our heart, and in my heart. To be able to be here representing our community, and our people, to do that in a way that reflects the shared vision and values of the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe and the Seattle Mariners, and to put that to work in a way that reflects who we each are as a people, as groups, as organizations, both independently and collaboratively, is just so meaningful, so powerful.
It’s what we in Muckleshoot refer to as ha?l syayus in our language. ha?l syayus means “good work” and I’m happy to be a part of that ha?l syayus today. So, thank you for the opportunity to be here, and Go Mariners!”
Donny’s remarks, delivered to a horde of media, were followed by a blessing done by Brandon Moses. After Brandon’s prayer and song were concluded, Donny and Mariners president of business operations Catie Griggs each grabbed one side of a shroud covering the large brass “Muckleshoot Diamond Club” plaque and unveiled it to the sound of clicking cameras.
Media and guests were then invited to view the club and go out to into the daylight where tasty hors d’oeuvres were being served that they could munch on while watching the Cleveland Guardians take batting practice. Donny remained in the Diamond Club answering questions and educating members of the media for another 20 to 30 minutes. Afterward, he provided the following candid insights on the new and growing relationship with the Mariners for his own people. Here’s Donny:
“We engaged a direct relationship with the Seattle Mariners last season and it’s been growing from there. In 2022, Jaison was able to come out and throw a first pitch for the game, as our Chairman. I was able to do one a little later in the season toward the end of the year.
And that was all in direct relation to the partner relationship that we had looked to engage in at that time. Really, that’s what started higher level conversations about a more meaningful and a deeper relationship, and we really made a lot of headway toward the backend of the season that ultimately led to the Muckleshoot Diamond Club.
If I’m being frank, I’ll go on to say that this is just the first part of a much larger initiative that’s going to be going on between us which is not being formally announced yet. We’re going to wait until a little further into the season to get into some of that stuff.
But I think the exciting piece is that you’ll start to see the impact in the stadium, and impact at the games immediately, and then some more exciting stuff that will be coming between the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe and the Seattle Mariners during the 2023 season. We’ve worked hard to build that relationship and laid the groundwork, and this day – as we unveil the new Muckleshoot Diamond Club – is a day to be able to celebrate some of that hard work.”
The Muckleshoot Messenger is a Tribal publication created by the Muckleshoot Office of Media Services. Tribal community members and Tribal employees are welcome to submit items to the newspaper such as news, calendar items, photos, poems, and artwork.