By Joe Manny Hernandez @manny_sportss
The next stop on our tour is Chukchansi Park, which is home to the Fresno Grizzlies. Chukchansi Park is located in the heart of Fresno, California and was built in 2002. Currently the Fresno Grizzlies are the Triple - A affiliate of the Houston Astros and were formally known as the San Francisco Giants Triple - A affiliate from “1998- 2014.” Before the park was named Chukchansi Park it was known as Grizzlies Stadium. The name change did not occur until 2006 when the city of Fresno partnered up with the Chukchansi Casinos and Resorts to remold and name the ballpark. Currently, this stadium sits 12,500 fans and has over 30 diamond club level suites available for purchase. The Fresno Grizzlies our currently sharing the stadium with their soccer counterparts the Fresno Fuego Futbol Club.
Parking, Entrance and Tickets:
The great thing about attending Minor League Baseball (MILB) games is parking. Parking at these ballparks are usually cheap and super close to the ballpark. Parking at Chukchansi Park was amazing, I parked right across the street for $5. This creates an easy way for fans to travel to this ballpark without the stress of finding parking.
As for entering the ballpark, it’s quick, easy and efficient. There are multiple entrances around the ballpark and all of them give you a great view of the stadium and the field. This parks infrastructure is incredible, they incorporated a new age ballpark style with good seating spacing and the ability to view the field no matter where one is sitting. In a sense Chukchansi does not have a bad seat. Unlike A- Advanced teams, Chukchansi Park offers people the chance to sit in the outfield, most of the Single A and Double A teams do not have this option.
Attending the game is not hard, the pricing for the game is very affordable especially if you have a family. Tickets range anywhere from $8 to $40 each. The $8 tickets get you into the park and let you sit anywhere in the second level, which again does not have bad seating.
The $40 ticket an excellent opportunity for any baseball fan. This offers fans the opportunity to enter their Phoenix Club. This restaurant is located in between the first and second level. The ticket includes one meal and the opportunity to watch the game though the restaurant windows. This experience gives fans a new look to Major League Baseball and make the game more interactive and luxurious.
Chukchansi Park was filled with a great atmosphere and created a sense of community, this park is a major contribution to the city of Fresno’s economy and will continue to be as the city develops more. My time at Chukchansi Park was unique experience. The sense of pride in this park was incredible. Chukchansi Park was filled with “die hard” Grizzly’s fans, which is always refreshing to see. This park had fans who wore championship gear, vintage/retro jerseys and knew all of the players’ names including the coaching staff. These people created relationships with the players, saying motivational things to them like “Keep up the good work, Preston” or “ Come on John, you never miss that”. A part that I found amazing was that these players would reply to them saying “I know Steve” . During the first inning a gentlemen told Preston Tucker of the Astros. “Don’t miss that fastball, Preston” and Preston replied “I won’t" , I leaned over and asked the gentleman if he knew Preston Tucker and he said “ I been coming here for 20 years, I feel like I know all of these kids”. This really made this realize that the city of Fresno needs this team account it creates a community pride. Although the attendance was very low the night I attended, the Fresno Grizzlies organization offers a lot of promotional tickets to get a lot of fans in. They offer family packages, group tickets, buy one get one day and many more. I think this organization has a lot of potential to change the baseball and sports culture in Fresno. It needs to be more outgoing with the non-baseball fans offering promotions like college night, kids day, family day, in order to get different people out to ballpark.
Overall it a great park filled with great fans, conversations were very minimal in the stands because people were engaged with the game. It shows that people love their baseball in Fresno. I would strongly recommend this park if you are in town and want to watch a baseball game.
A.J Reed 1B, Preston Tucker OF, Jon Singleton 1B
Fresno Grizzlies Website: