Sovereign Bank Stadium is getting a new name, and it's proving to be a bit of a tongue twister.
The Spanish banking giant Santander Group acquired Boston-based Sovereign Bank in 2009, and by this fall all 721 U.S. Sovereign Bank branches, including more than 150 in Pennsylvania, will be renamed Santander banks.
Because of a sponsorship agreement, that rebranding also will apply to Sovereign Bank Stadium, the York Revolution baseball team's home turf.
"In the off season, we'll make the change," said Eric Menzer, Revolution president. "We've actually been working with Sovereign for some time on the forthcoming name change."
It's a change, yes, but it shouldn't be that big of a deal.
Still starts with an "s" and has three syllables, right?
But hold on ... it turns out the Spanish are picky when it comes to pronunciation.
Where we see a perfectly reasonable "San Tander," they see it more like "Saan Ton Dair."
Menzer said he's spoken to the corporate office in Boston, and they understand most folks around here probably aren't going to break into a Spanish accent to pronounce Santander.
Even so, just getting it right in good ol' English might still be a challenge.
The York Dispatch showed some visitors at a recent Revs game the spelling of the new name and asked them to give it a try.
Responses ran the gamut from "Standard Stadium," to "Santanner Stadium," to "Santana Stadium."
People will probably keep calling it Sovereign Stadium for a while, Menzer said, or perhaps The Vault as he refers to the park.
Maybe "The Banco" will catch on, he said, since Santander's official name is "Banco Saan Ton Dair."
We suppose it doesn't really matter what people call the stadium, as long as they know it's the home of the Revs -- a team that has become a valuable community partner since the park opened in 2007.
Last week, for instance, the team announced it will be taking over the York City Halloween parade, a popular event that has lost its major sponsors in recent years.
The York YWCA had been producing the parade for seven years, but last year it said the cost and time commitment had become too much. The 2012 parade would be the last, it warned, unless another sponsor stepped forward.
"I guess I'm a sucker for a good cause," Menzer said.
We guess so, because it wasn't that long ago the team also took over the annual Fourth of July fireworks display when three sponsors dropped out of that annual event.
Menzer and other team officials said -- without making any promises -- the team intends to produce these events every year.
"I would not go into this as a once-and-done," Menzer said.
In the spirit of cooperation, then, if the team keeps saying the stadium's new name, we'll keep trying to get it right.
Consider it our way of saying "grass yas."