The Orem Owlz are canceling a promotion celebrating Caucasian heritage after online outrage over the planned event.
The promotion was one of more than 30 planned events during the minor league affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels' season. According to the team's site, the event was planned as a celebration of "Irish, Italian, German … or even Utahn! Whatever your background, celebrate it at the home of the Owlz!" The promotion details have since been removed from the team's website.
The promotion was set for Aug. 10, but was canceled after social media outrage that began Friday afternoon.
"We understand, in light of recent tragic events, that our intentions have been misconstrued," the team announced in a statement about the cancellation. Racial tension again became a focal point in the U.S. after the killing of nine individuals at a historically black church in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday. The suspected gunman, Dylann Roof, was arraigned on charges Friday.
In the statement, the team said "Caucasian Heritage Night" was intended to be a farce on Caucasian culture, with burgers and mayonnaise served on Wonder Bread, as well showing clips from shows like "Friends" and "Seinfeld" throughout the game.
"Minor League Baseball, and the Orem Owlz, is about baseball, togetherness and family fun for all fans of all races, religions, and orientations," the team said in the statement. "Our goal in this promotion, like any of our promotions, is to have fun and make fun of everyday normalcies."
The Owlz home opener is set for Saturday night. The team began play this season on Thursday in Ogden.
Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox tweeted that he had spoken to one of the co-owners of the team, and the owner said "he had no idea this was happening and immediately said it would never happen." Cox was unavailable for comment.