Saturday, May 15, 2010

Wrigley Field - May 11, 2010

I had the opportunity this past week to do something that I have always wanted to do someday - see a baseball game at Wrigley Field. I was in Chicago all week on business at a national meeting, and it turns out that the scheduled group activity for Tuesday night was a trip to the Cubs game at Wrigley. After a full day of meetings about 30 of us boarded a bus for the ride to the park. On the way I found out that we were not actually going to be in the stadium, but would be at one of the private roof top places across the street. I have seen these on TV, and they look pretty cool, but I was a bit disappointed that we were not actually going to be in the park.

The place we were at was called Beyond the Ivy, and was located beyond the left field wall, just inside the foul pole, across Waveland Avenue from the ballpark. It was a four or five story building with bars, food and inside viewing areas (through large plate glass windows) on the lower floors, and bleacher style rows of tables and chairs on the roof for maybe 40 people or so.

It was a damp cold night, but there were still a lot of bugs, so it was typical of the no-so-great conditions you can get at an early season night game. It was a lot of fun, and it was great to be watching a game at Wrigley, but I (and several other like-minded souls) couldn't help but feeling like it would be even better if we could be IN the ballpark.

In the fourth inning, with us having put in a good amount of face time with the group, five of us walked over to the box office, bought tickets to the game and went into Wrigley. I am still amazed that for $25, we were able to walk up, buy tickets, and sit right behind home plate. Admittedly, we were a ways back, but Philadelphia these days you couldn't get these kind of tickets unless you were a long time season ticket holder, and they would cost easily three times as much.

The game itself was alright - a low scoring affair that the Florida Marlins ended up winning 3-2, but the important thing was that I got to watch a game (or part of a game) in Wrigley field, looking out at the ivy covered walls, the center field scoreboard, and all the other historic baseball sights. We left in the 8th inning to rejoin our group across the street, but the opportunity to spend even four innings in Wrigley was...priceless.

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