Showing posts with label Ballparks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ballparks. Show all posts

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Mik's Food Scrapbook: SunTrust Park

At SunTrust Park, Mik tried the buffalo fries from Potato Cutter. He enjoyed them, but they were messy and spicy. The Potato Cutter also has a seasonings bar to flavor your fries how you want and Dad and I enjoyed the regular fries with garlic onion seasoning.

I also got a Tomahawk Chop with Butterfinger topping. It was good, but also messy as the chocolate fell off almost right away.

SunTrust Park

Date of Visit: July 14, 2017

Since a new ballpark opened, we had to go to the ballpark for a family vacation this year. We choose the game based on when the Dbacks were in town. Interestingly, the Dbacks ended up in town for Mom’s birthday, which was the same time we did Atlanta on our 2009 ballpark trip and we had even gotten her a ticket to join us that game, but she didn’t due to work and joined us in St. Louis for a game instead.

We ended up parking in Lot 29, which is what I repurchased for parking when I bought the tickets. When I was buying tickets I couldn’t find any parking map that had the same labels as the online ticket system so I kind of had to guess what seemed the closest. This isn’t the closest, but it wasn’t too bad of a walk up the hill and over the bridge to the ballpark. Also, when we were walking out of the parking lot they asked if we wanted the shuttle, so it doesn’t seem difficult to utilize that service if needed at least to get to the park (not at all sure about the after game logistics of that).

The gates were open when we got there and we tried to go in like everybody else in the middle ones and they told us we had to go over to the media entrance with the wheelchair. That’s fine, but the real problem is we get there and only one person gets to go in with him. So I then had to go back to where there was now lines of five to ten people at every gate. Nats park sometimes does it like that, too, but they specifically only send one person with the wheelchair. Also, I know for a fact a person in a wheelchair had just been allowed through the metal detector entrance instead of going around, so it’s certainly not a consistent or fair process and they are way too far into the season for any excuse to the total confusion for the entrance experience.

Once inside the way we came in there are steps down to the concourse. There is also a ramp to the left, which we used to get down, as well as elevators, but the elevator lobby is before they scan your tickets and when you come in it looks like it’s only for those going to suites, although we used them later to get to our seats and they really seem to be for general use.

We walked all the way around the main concourse before heading up to our seats. Overall we found it felt too small and crowded. That may partially have been because it was a Friday fireworks and bobblehead game, so a lot of people were there and there early. However, it really is nowhere near as wide a concourse as say like Nationals Park, which also can be crowded at times but it takes many more people to do it. Also, there are a lot of lines for team stores taking up space, which were almost Opening Day type bad that we never even went into the big team store and just got our bat and ball at the little shop by our seats in Section 339.

The one thing that we liked about the main concourse was the monument area, which seems to basically be some of the stuff from the museum that was a separate admission thing in Turner Field. It is kind of nice that it is now accessed as really a feature of the ballpark, but then it ends up more crowded and it’s kind of more like walking through the numbers at Yankee Stadium except it isn’t manned (or even have signs) to make it so that traffic flows in just one direction, which it appears is how it is designed to be done.

Overall our impressions of SunTrust Park were that it’s not a better ballpark and in fact worse. However, the actual view and seats were as good if not better, so at least the actual game experience is still good. Of course, it would’ve been better if the Dbacks won, but at least it was a close game the whole time.

Of course, Mik was happy they had cupholders for each spot in the wheelchair row. It even gets a bonus on the cupholder rating because the folding chairs in the wheelchair row also have one on them.

Destination Info:
SunTrust Park
755 Battery Avenue Southeast
Atlanta, GA 30339

Friday, May 5, 2017

Mik's Food Scrapbook: Loaded Tots at Nationals Park

While Mik didn't so much enjoy watching his Dbacks lose to the Nats yesterday, he did enjoy the new loaded tots. He tried the BBQ pulled pork ones, which also has mac and cheese on them. I had the crab ones, which were also tasty, but they didn't really seem loaded as the amount of topping to tot ratio is heavy on the tots.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Mik's Food Scrapbook: Virginia Country Kitchen at Nationals Park

Date of Visit: June 14, 2016

Mik tried out the Virginia Ham Biscuit from the Virginia Country Kitchen concession stand this game. He didn't really like the ham because it was too sweet for his liking. He thought the biscuit was okay. The chips were his favorite part and actually very good in his opinion.

Accessibility Review: Nationals Park Section 320

Date of Visit: June 14, 2016

Ever since Dad's been working at the Capitol, we've mostly picked the games to go to based on when they do group tickets. This time Dad noticed that the Cubs were in town and the Tuesday game was $1 ice cream, so he asked me if I wanted to go on Sunday when they were doing group tickets or go on our own Tuesday. Since Mik was interested and a night game was more appealing to me summer weather wise, we got tickets for Tuesday.

First thing Mik really liked about going to the game was that we now live in walking distance of Nationals Park and don't have to deal with the crowded Metro (or potential delays...).

Mik thought the view from section 320 was great because you could see the whole field easily. However, he did not like that it was in the sun until about an hour into the game. Next time he wants to get seats on the 300 level on the third base side.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Nationals Park: Star Wars Day

Mik had been wanting the R2D2 can cooler since he saw about the promotion, but neither of us wanted to do a Sunday afternoon game in the summer. Dad and I did end up going, though, but I didn't even realize it was the Star Wars Day game when he asked if I wanted to go to the game that day because his work was doing group tickets again. With the upper 90s feels like 105 to 110 heat advisory, I seriously thought we'd just get the can coolers and not stay long, but it ended up not being too bad up in the shade in 416. And it wasn't too bad of a game until the top of the 9th.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Mik's Food Scrapbook: Throwin' Cheese at Nationals Park

Mik was excited to try out the new Thrown' Cheese place at Nationals Park. He did almost give up on trying it after seeing it was the only place with a line and the line didn't really seem to move when we got in it. However, we still had at least an hour to waste before even the pregame stuff started and it was certainly better wasting time in line for food than trying to go to the Team Store on Opening Day.

The line actually wasn't that long when we got in it (probably about 10 people in front of us), but it did take at least 15 minutes to get to the front and then after ordering and paying we still had to wait at least another 10 to 15 minutes to get Mik's sandwich. They definitely aren't that efficient, yet, but they did pretty good considering it was a new venue and Opening Day. Also, it was still better than what I remember all the concessions were like on the park's first exhibition game and Opening Day in 2008.

Mik ordered the Triple Play, which is a grilled cheese made with three different cheeses. He really enjoyed it and the chips that came with it.

He also tried the mac and cheese that I ordered, which we finished while waiting for his food. He thought it was a little too salty. Also, it wasn't hot or really even warm and it's not like we waited to eat until we got to our seats.

Accessibility Review: Nationals Park Section 201

Finally planned ahead enough to get tickets on the other side of the park, although still didn't manage to be able to get Gallery Level despite trying during presale (couldn't get anything) and as soon as all Opening Day tickets went on sale. It was a toss up on whether it was the way to go as Opening Day can sometimes be on the cooler side and being on the sunny side of the park in our usual choice in Right Field Terrace can be good. However, it ended up being very nice Opening Day weather in the 70s and being on the shady side worked out good.

Mik has now declared this section as his favorite as you can see the whole field (part of right field is obstructed from Right Field Terrace) and you can also see the scoreboard easier. Still noisier speaker wise than Right Field Terrace, but not bad like when we sat on the Field Level concourse for Opening Day last year.

The cup holders were even more convenient for him in this section as they are at about his knee level rather than being almost on the ground.

The only thing that makes Right Field Terrace still preferable other than it being much cheaper is that no one can crowd around you there as that area has the wheelchair seating separated from the concourse as well as the rest of the section. Section 201 is like most other wheelchair sections in that it is at the top of the section and on the concourse. Not that big of a deal and certainly was not as crowded as Field Level, but it is kind of nice that you don't have to worry much about getting in and out of your spot the way the section is in Right Field Terrace, which is one of the reasons Mik is glad he didn't decide on his powerchair for this game (mainly was about the crowds on the Metro, though).

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Accessibility Review: Nationals Park Section 230

On Monday, June 30, Mik and I went to the Rockies @ Nats game because it was Bryce Harper bobblehead day.  It was Mik's first experience taking his power chair to Nationals Park and he did great other than he really needs work on his backwards driving skills for navigating the Metro, especially the elevators, but I'm sure after a few more months of living here he'll get the hang of it.

Since we got there before they opened up the all the sections, we spent some time in the outfield concourse.  Mik enjoyed checking out the heights of the pitchers that they have on the one parking garage.  Also, we are looking forward to that area becoming a team store and hoping it ends up more spacious and thus more accessible compared to the current one.

Overall Mik liked the seats in Section 230.  Of course, any ballpark with cup holders makes him happy even though these are a little low for him to easily use himself.  The view is good other than some of deep right field is obstructed.  The main thing he didn't like is that it is in the sun and it was a somewhat hot and humid day.  However, the fact that the speakers aren't nearby and it is thus quieter than sitting in the concourse sections makes him still prefer this area over the others we have tried before.  Plus, these seats are almost the cheapest possible (actually, were the cheapest when I got around to buying tickets the day before the game).

Next time, I think I will try to get the actual cheapest over in the upper outfield gallery because those are on the shady side.  Also, maybe next time Mik will actually get around to trying some ballpark food besides the Boardwalk Fries because yet again that is what he wanted first and then the lines were crazy and it was hot, so we decided to go home rather than get anything else.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Accessibility Review: Wrigley Field Section 208 and Green Lot

For the Wrigley Field 100th Birthday game, I got us tickets in Section 208.  I ended up buying the tickets as part of a six game pack that was on sale before single game tickets to ensure we got tickets to the Dbacks game on April 23rd.  At the time we tried to buy parking, but they said it was not on sale until single game tickets.  Dad called back then and they still did not have parking or at least not accessible parking on sale and they took his number to call him back when it did go on sale.  We ended up with the last available accessible parking a few weeks later

The parking we got was the green lot, which is a few blocks from the park, but still very convenient.  Not anywhere near as close and nice as the parking right by the park entrance we got on the ballpark trip, but still nice to know you have a spot before heading over there, especially for such a major game.  However, the green lot is just dirt.  There are no actually spaces, but they didn't say anything about Dad leaving a huge area between the truck and the car they said for him to park back up right next to.  Rather disappointing parking situation after knowing they have good lots, but there is hope for the parking lot in the future because it is also clearly marked as being under construction.

Section 208 has much less hope, though. Mainly we didn't like the section because you cannot see the scoreboard, which is our favorite part of Wrigley. Also, the seats are not raised up more than the normal step between rows, so Mik couldn't see anything once people started standing up for the pregame ceremony.  This issue is made more annoying by the fact they have a bunch of TV screens there and they were just showing ads.  At least at Nats park for Opening Day when we couldn't see the scoreboard the TV screens there showed the pregame stuff even though the view of it was not actually obstructed.

Next time I will pay more attention when getting wheelchair seats at Wrigley and pay the extra for those ones up another level and behind home plate as while they were the most expensive on the ballpark trip they are totally worth it for an enjoyable game experience.

We will give them some credit for having cup holders for all spots in this area, which is good because while the rest of the 200 sections have cup holders I think there are still some regular sections closer to the field that don't have cup holders..  Also, the ushers are good at paying attention and bringing out the chairs for the companions.

Happy 100th Birthday, Wrigley Field!

Since last fall we had been planning to go to a game at Wrigley Field during the 100th Anniversary season.  Mik choose that we go when the Dbacks were in town. We had settled on the Wednesday game of the series since Dad always has Wednesdays off and thus would not have to take as much time off to go.  I did not even realize until looking about when tickets go on sale back in February that we had decided on the actual 100th anniversary date.

We left for the ballpark around 9 a.m. thinking it would be best to get there before it was crowded.  On the way Mik was a little hesitant about us ending up there too early, but in the end we were there by 9:30 a.m. and only a few people from the front of one of the lines in.  By the time we got in the ballpark and were walking up the ramps to our seats we saw the line wrapped around through the parking lot, so it was totally worth getting there early.  Plus, Dad and Mik got the souvenir shopping done at the Cubs store across the street to avoid the small crowded store inside the park.

We also got to check out the Wrigley Field ballpark cake that was on display by the Ernie Banks statue, which was also dressed specially in a Federals jersey.

Once in the ballpark we got our favorite food in the whole MLB - the Northside Twist Pretzel.

We also enjoyed eating the free cupcakes we got on the way into the ballpark.

The weather was not so enjoyable, as it was in the low 40s.  Waiting to get in the park was not bad, as it was in the sun, but once we got to our seats it was cold.  We told Mik he just had to make it to the first pitch as his feet were already cold.

The pregame stuff was kind of interesting with some of the past players (football and baseball) going out on the field and a 1914 ball being used for the ceremonial first pitch.  The coolest thing, though, was seeing Bud Selig.  No, not seeing him down there on the field.  After the pregame ceremony, he walked right by us on his way up to the executive suites.   That made up for us not being able to see the flyover from our seats.

We left after the first pitch as promised, although I have to admit Mik did say he would stay as long as I wanted.  Really, though, he already knew I was also could and I was not going to go back on my promise that we could leave after the first pitch because it cannot be good for him to have his feet so cold when he cannot move around much to stay warm.

We ended up watching the game from the condo.  It was sad to not be there for the Happy Birthday in the fifth and the seventh inning stretch being led from the field, but we would not have noticed the balloon release from our seats.  Seriously, if not for the Bud Selig encounter, I would have totally regretted the seat selection as you also cannot see the scoreboard (the best part of Wrigley!) from the wheelchair row at the top of 208.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Mik's Food Scrapbook: Nats Ice and Boardwalk Fries

Since the only thing Mik has had at Nationals Park is a pretzel dog and food at the Diamond Club, he was not sure what to try this time.  I told him that I used to enjoy getting Boardwalk fries when I came to games during the park's inaugural season.  He decided to go with the fries and ended up enjoying them.  He also spotted Dippin' Dots and even though the weather was not that warm he also enjoyed some Nats Ice (similar to rainbow ice flavor, but has red, white, and blue dots).  Afterwards he was full and said he has to come to another game because he still has not had just a hot dog at Nationals Park.  Plus, there are plenty of other appealing food options here.

Accessibility Review: Nationals Park Section 141

For Opening Day 2014 we ended up with tickets in section 141.  I would have preferred to be up a level, but certainly better than when Mom and I had seats one row from the top for the Opening Day six years ago when they opened Nationals Park.  Also, good seats considering we only finally decided to go to Opening Day versus another game while in DC this weekend and this game ended up being a sellout with the second highest Opening Day attendance for this park.

The main downsides to this section are you cannot see the scoreboard because you are under it and you cannot see plays that happen deep in the outfield in front of you.  However, they do have TV screens showing the game, which are nicely placed sideways instead of straight in front of you. Thus, they are not obstructing the view, but are still easy to look over at.

Mik was of course happy with the section because there were cup holders.  The section had a standing view are behind it, but it was nicely separated and you did not feel crowded even though the concourse was very busy and we were on the end of the row.

Overall section 141 was good, but I still like the view of the park best from the right field terrace level (sections even numbers between 222 and 236) and in particular 224. Maybe, I'm biased just from having sat there so many times when I had partial season tickets during the park's inaugural season, but I have sat in 236 and in left field mezzanine level (203 I think) and 224 remains my favorite.

Mik also said he preferred the view from 224 at least based on his remembering it from the brief few minutes we sat in 224 before getting to go to the Diamond Club on the ballpark trip.  Also, Mik found the speakers in 141 to be too loud and they really bothered him before the game when they are constantly on. I remember him having that issue a few years back at Chase Field.  Both times those were seats on the main level covered concourse area and I don't think he would have a problem with the open area upper levels like 224 is.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Accessibility Review: Turner Field Section 229/231

Chipper Jones #10On June 28, 2013, we went to the Dbacks @ Braves game.  Mik wanted to go to the game as soon as he found out that the one time the Dbacks were in town at the new closest MLB ballpark for us (4 hours vs. when we were only 2 hours from Phoenix) was also when they were retiring Chipper Jones jersey (only one of Mik's favorite players that was never a Dback or a pitcher).  I put off getting the tickets for awhile since we did not know our flights for our Disney Cruise until late April.  Once I knew we would be back in barely more than enough time to get to Atlanta for the game I found the game sold out when I went to the regular online ticket buying, but when I clicked the accessible link and went through the chat process to purchase there were still wheelchair seats with the best available being in 229.

No Cup Holder
Not sure if the seats have been changed throughout the park since 2009 or it is just the 200 level, but they now have seats that can be folded and swung to the side out of the way every two or three spaces for the accessible rows.  That seems to be an improvement, but sadly still no cup holders and it is annoying with the regular seats in that section having them.
View from 229/231

The view from our seats was not bad, but the scoreboard was partially blocked.  Mostly that did not matter, but during the Chipper Jones number retiring ceremony it was annoying to not be able to see what was going on on the field due to only seeing the bottom half of the scoreboard.  Since the row is raised up a good amount from the section, heads do not get in the way, but it also leads to it being mainly just an obstructed scoreboard view for the accessible row.  They attempt to fix this problem with television screens, but the one in our section was not on and there was nothing they could do about it (or even say that it was broken).  What is really sad is now that I look at the ballpark map, I believe we got seated in 231 and not our ticketed section of 229 and that TV worked.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Cashman Stadium: Las Vegas 51s

Cashman Stadium
Dad and I went to a game at Cashman Stadium since we were in Las Vegas for a bowling tournament and the Las Vegas 51s were in town on June 16, 2012.  Now that we are all up-to-date and will be for at least the foreseeable future on MLB ballparks we are going to start trying to hit Triple-A ballparks.  Not really going to try to hit them all anytime soon, but we are going to try to work them in when we can, which really means when we are traveling without Mik, since he is done with any baseball besides his Dbacks for now.

Cashman Stadium

Cashman Stadium is an interesting one with it being quite multipurpose like a lot of stuff in Vegas.  They have a theater and a conference center on one side of it, so it was kind of odd to park on the theater side of the ballpark and it not even looking like you are at a ballpark.
Cashman Stadium

We opted for the cheapest seats, which is called the reserved section, but is basically bleacher seating on the baselines.  It was hot (not much different than a Tucson Padres game, though) and the plaza seating for a few bucks more looks tempting with its shade and misters.  However, it is all behind the home plate netting, which I hate, so kind of a toss up if it would have really been better, except that it would have been because the reserved bleacher seating was extremely uncomfortable and usually I like bleacher seats.
Cashman Stadium

Overall Cashman Stadium was kind of a bore.  Yeah, I do not expect much from a Triple-A park, but there was not much to like, especially with the game being mostly a lot of walks, hit-by-pitch, and just dumb luck that anyone was scoring.  The food selection was also pretty disappointing, as it was mostly hot dogs, although they had quite a few different preparation styles.  The garlic fries sounded good, but ended up very oily and not really garlicy.  However, they did have Ben & Jerry's and Dippin' Dots, which is nice for hot games.  If your into alcohol at a ballgame, though, they do have a full bar.  Better yet, they totally do cutoff people they think are getting drunk, although that led to the guy next to us being a totally jerk for an inning before he finally decided to just leave.  I guess the only really interesting thing about the ballpark is that they sell inflatable aliens.

Cashman Stadium