Between fielding grounders and taking cuts at Atlanta Braves spring training camp in Kissimmee, Fla., Dansby Swanson got an idea.
The 24-year-old shortstop and Atlanta native wanted to both celebrate and give back to his beloved hometown through a charitable brand borrowing the city’s nickname: #AllThingsLoyal (ATL).
The goal? To give shouts-out to the unique aspects of Atlanta culture – from music to sports to brands that call the city home – that have been a part of Swanson’s life. On every Braves home game Friday, Swanson posts a short tribute video to his social media channels paired with a limited-edition t-shirt for sale at allthingsloyal.com. Proceeds go to a different Atlanta charity each week.
He kicked off the series with a piece on seminal Atlanta hip-hop duo Outkast and, a few weeks later, highlighted
We chatted with Swanson last week on his way to the ballpark to learn more about his vision for the campaign and his love of
What inspired you to launch #AllThingsLoyal? Do you see yourself as an ATL ambassador?
I absolutely do. Being from Atlanta, I know how amazing this place is. But it gets overshadowed by bigger cities like New York, L.A., Miami and Chicago for whatever reason. That’s partly because Atlantans are humble, and we’re from the South. We just do our thing, keep our heads down and keep moving.
I wanted to tell my story and share what Atlanta means to me and why I believe we live in such a cool place with so many special things. It gives me a tremendous opportunity to show my personality and, at end of the day, hopefully inspire people along the way to be better. Each shirt benefits a different cause and shows that we as Atlanta folks can work together to help make people around us better.
You’re highlighted everything from the Georgia Dome to Migos. How do you choose your subjects?
All Things Loyal is an ongoing story unfolding with every video and t-shirt. It touches on Atlanta’s past, present and future. I wanted to spotlight Atlanta’s culture through my eyes and my story. At spring training earlier this year, I started to write down things about Atlanta that are important to me. I wrote and wrote and wrote. I’m a huge hip-hop fan, so I started there. Just look at the number of artists who are from here! Outkast was the first rap I listened to growing up. They put Atlanta hip-hop on the map. So I started there. Next, we did the ’96 Olympics, which brought Atlanta to more of a global stage. Then we did Ludacris, my favorite rapper ever. Then we did The Varsity, followed by
Coca-Cola mean to you, as a beverage and a brand?
It’s hard to explain because it just fits so naturally. I’ve played baseball my whole life, and
Do you have a favorite Coca-Cola memory growing up?
Every time I’d come home from a game in East Cobb, I’d convince my dad to stop at QT on the way home for a Coke slushy. That’s the most consistent memory that stands out.
Coca-Cola and baseball, specifically Braves baseball, such a natural fit?
The Braves are the official team of the South. And baseball is America’s pastime. Coke and baseball just go together. Especially at Turner Field – I remember watching Braves games on TV, or being there in person, and seeing the giant Coke bottle in left field. It was so iconic, and provided so much excitement. And that tradition continues at SunTrust Park with