John Bollinger is the Founder, Majority Owner, and CEO of the Bismarck Larks, Funatix Events, and the Northwoods League’s newest expansion franchise in Minot, ND. John’s passion is using FUN to make a difference in the lives of the fans, businesses, players, employees, and communities he serves.
Under John’s direction, the Bismarck Larks were named Northwoods League Organization of the Year in 2017 and 2018 and were named one of Front Office Sports Top Employers in Sports in 2021. Bollinger was named the 2017 Northwoods League Executive of the Year and in 2020 was named the Bismarck-Mandan Chamber EDC 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year for his and his team’s safe and innovative approach to playing baseball during the pandemic. The Bismarck Larks celebrated the completion of their 6th season in 2022 selling out 98% of all tickets available and have sold out the vast majority of their games since the team’s inception in 2017. In 2019, John started Funatix Events which works with local events such as the Bismarck Marathon, Mandan Rodeo Days, and Bismarck Santa Run to maximize the experience for their customers, sponsors, and community. In addition, Funatix Events is an all-inclusive event company helping plan large-scale company picnics, catering events, and will begin planning its own community festivals in 2023.
Before Bismarck, John served as the General Manager of the Kalamazoo Growlers for three seasons, an expansion Northwoods League team that he helped start in 2014. Before the Northwoods League, John worked two years as the Assistant General Manager of the Southern Ohio Copperheads, a summer collegiate baseball team in the Great Lakes League. At the same time, he attended Ohio University where he received his MBA and Masters in Sports Administration. Previous to that, he worked in ticket sales for the Springfield Cardinals, the AA affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals while he was finishing his undergraduate degree in Entertainment Management at Missouri State University. Bollinger is a native of St. Louis, Missouri but now calls Bismarck home with his wife Marcie, daughter Teddi, and their two dogs Lillian and Walt.