My 9 year old and I are heading out on our first ballpark trip this summer. We are going to 11 ballparks and can't wait.
Our trip in order is:
Guaranteed Rate Field
Great American Ball Park
I booked hotels before finding this site, but all of our hotels are within a mile of the ballparks, except PNC Park (staying with family) and Miller Park (about 8 miles away). I am waiting on tickets until a little closer to the trip (7/31-8/14) but if anyone has any suggestions for best places to sit, especially with a kid I'd greatly appreciate that. Also, any suggestions for kid friendly things to do around any of the stadiums would be great.
I never intended for the trip to cover so many stadiums but as I would look at each teams schedule and it just worked out that they were home I couldn't pass up going. After this trip we have set a goal to get to all 30 before he graduates from high school.
I love this site and have already gotten so many tips/tricks from reading other posts. Thanks to anyone who can give some feedback and happy chasing to all of you.
I think this is fantastic what you are doing with your son. Spending time with your son like that is a wonderful thing that will pay dividends to both of you for many years to come. Congratulations on being such a special father.
My wife and I did a ballpark tour last summer and we just bought tickets on game day at the ballpark. If you buy at the ballpark and not online you save about $10.00 per ticket on service charges. We would get online and see what tickets were available and just request them at the ticket counter on game day at the park. Never had a problem. You do have to kinda keep an eye on availability though in case there is a sell out. Cubs tickets might have to be purchased before game day.
Also, if you buy at the ballpark you get the actual ticket for a souvenir. Buy online and you get a piece of paper. Not all parks have a will-call.
We usually sat in the upper deck between 1st and home or 3rd and home. You can see all the action, seats are cheap and you really get a feel for the stadiums. For us it was more about the ballparks and less about the actual game. If you do end up getting seats in the lower bowl be sure to at least go to the upper deck for an inning or so. It is a whole different feel up there and the views are usually wonderfull.
You will love PNC. It is probably my favorite.
I would also suggest taking bottled water to the game. All ballparks allow you to bring in unopened bottled water. Most parks also have water vendors outside on the street selling bottled water. 15 cents in grocery store, $1.00 outside park from vendor or $5.00 inside the stadium. It adds up.
Wow!, very ambitious. I am thrilled for you. Certainly, many of these ballparks offer marvelous views and some have kid friendly areas. The MLB app offers seat upgrades for some parks and other information pertinent to the ball park. Research that before the trip. Its quick and easy. Many ballparks have kid friendly experiences for free or a small fee. You may already have the MLB app or its free to upload if you have a smart phone. The app will tell you the section or area to see things interesting to you. Food and snacks are generally pricey at the ballpark. However, for instance, Wednesdays at Whiite Sox games are $1 hot dogs, Great American Ball Park offers the "Kroger Meal deal" every game at most concessions for about $10 that includes a hot dog, drink, bag of potato chips and a snack. Also, GABP has a $20 all you can eat per person that includes 5 hot dogs and unlimited soft drinks, popcorn and peanuts at 2 stations. Flash game ticket sales on the team web sites are common. Check them out for a moment each day before and during your trip. Many teams have standard discounts at any time. For instance, the Brewers offer kids (14 and under) ticket pricing for 50% off on select days through the season (ie Thu Aug 9 vs Padres during your trip). Most ballparks allow outside food and beverage with limits. Clear plastic factory sealed containers of non alcoholic drinks are almost always allowed. I have brought in wrapped sandwiches from delis and favorite snacks on occasion to many ballparks. Check the individual team websites under "Carry in Policy".
Many ballparks have easy transit to the game with mass transit or walking. For instance, taking the CTA purple or red lines in Chicago is easy and a thrill when visiting those places. At GABP, consider parking in Covington KY and walking across the Roebling Bridge to the game. You'll easily see GABP on the banks of the Ohio River and enjoy the views from a bridge over 150 years old. At other places, like Detroit, go safe, pay the piper and park in a lot with many other cars and follow the fans toward Comerica. You'll be fine.
I hope the weather is good for your trip and games. This is a huge adventure. Keep yourself rested & healthy, take things in slowly, & follow your curiosity. It's a lifetime experience and will likely be looked back on fondly.
Thanks for all the suggestions. I really can't wait to get this trip started.