For the first time in several years, Lakewood was on the calendar for a visit.
For those who love minor league baseball, Lakewood is a great place to visit. The BlueClaws and FirstEnergy Park put on a solid experience. From the food and the activities, to the action on the field, it’s a top-notch place to visit.
Though this trip did have a small disappointment, but with a good ending. So allow me to get that out of the way.
The seats we had were slightly down the third-base line and the last row in the section. When we got there, people were in our seats, but despite grumbling, they moved. We sat down and the game was soon to begin.
We stayed in the seats for about an inning and a half, give or take.
I’m not sure what was going on, but people continually went up and down the aisle. And a lot of times, it was the same people. Up and down. It didn’t matter if it was in the middle of the inning, if there were people to bat or anything like that. Up and down. Ushers didn’t nothing about this, either.
In many stadiums, ushers will make sure people wait to go, at least, down the aisle. That way it doesn’t take away from other people enjoying the game. The usher near our section basically said there wasn’t anything he could do about it.
Eventually, one of the people in our group went and complained to the ticket window. To give credit, one of the managers (or somebody like that) who my friend talked upgraded our seats to an area where it was much better and we were able to enjoy the game. Kudos to the BlueClaws for that, but it’s a lesson to be learned here in regard to making sure all fans have a chance to … well, watch the game.
Back to the stadium.
Parking at FirstEnergy Park is easy and close. It’s pretty easy to get to as well, which is nice.
Once inside, there’s a lot of choices. The field features a full concourse that goes around the whole stadium. There are numerous choices for food and drink, which is a good thing. Prices are decent, but remember you are at the Jersey Shore — in the summer.
The team store is pretty big, especially considering it’s a Single-A team. The store has plenty of options and items for all fans.
There’s a friendly vibe here, which is good. The atmosphere is decent, but realize that not everybody is here just for baseball. With so many other things to enjoy, some come for the full social aspect — hence the up and down in the aisles. That aspect of things can hopefully be fixed by the team.
I do love stadiums that have the full concourse. Though I am one who usually stays put in my seat (I keep my own book, after all), I usually like to go for a stroll one inning a game. I peek around the park, watch the game as I walk, grab some food etc. Lakewood is a perfect place to be able to do this.
It also helps that I am a Phillies fan, so getting to see people in the minors is always a bonus.
Side story — and this doesn’t go against the stadium or the team because this can, and does, happen all over. But we had the human encyclopedia behind us this night. See, this guy knew everything about baseball. And he’d be fresh to tell you what kind of signing bonus people had or that they wouldn’t make it to the majors because of the round they were picked in (tell that to Mike Piazza, big guy), and he was quick to hit his smart phone to Google something.
Thankfully, he didn’t stay the whole game.
It is always amusing when people talk a little extra louder to their friends to act like they know more than they do. More than once I mentioned to those I was with how the guy was fully wrong and had no clue. Alas, I didn’t say much more and they left after six or so innings, which goes to show you how big of a fan motor mouth really was.
Side note two — one of the group ended up with a foul ball that game, which was cool.
In the end, a great night for a game. It’s always fun to visit a game at the Shore and see the BlueClaws play and I look forward to my next trip down.
Home of the Lakewood Blueclaws ( Single A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies)
Visited on: July 10, 2015
Opponent: Hickory Crawdads (Single A affiliate of the Texas Rangers)
Ratings (out of 10)
- Stadium: 8.5/10
- Concessions: 8/10
- Parking: 8/10
- Ambiance: 7/10
- Friendliness: 9/10
I am continuing the Summer of Baseball from 2014 and hope to blog about each new stadium I visit in 2015. Ones visited in the past can be viewed linked up in the 2014 version.
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