MLB Parks Tour #12 – Turner Field, Atlanta, GA – 2011

Working through these as quickly as I can preparing for the trip in June!

Our trip to Atlanta was a pretty exciting one. While many people would consider a drive from Fort Worth to the Georgia capital pretty uninspiring, for us it was to be the last road trip we ever took as a family of two. We found out in October that we were going to be pregnant with our first child (which we’d have just two months later), and decided to take a little “babymoon” trip to Georgia and Pensacola, Florida. We had such a great time, staying in the Atlantic Station area, visiting Stone Mountain, and eating at Hotlanta staples, Ted’s Montana Grill and The Vortex. And when we got out of Atlanta after the game, we got to visit some new friends we met while in Europe, Mark & Tammy Tamayo. And on that note, I should mention we got to eat at the greatness that is Peg Leg Pete’s, the restaurant that Mark manages.

The trip was eventful, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the baseball park and game we attended (especially considering the title of this post). I was actually quite excited to visit Turner Field, less for the park itself and more for the history that surrounds the Braves franchise. Well, that and the chance to participate in an authentic Tomahawk Chop. Turner Field, or “The Ted”, was completed in 1996 as Centennial Olympic Stadium, and was the the centerpiece of the Olympics being held in Atlanta that year. The next year it was converted to a baseball stadium, and just in time too, as the Braves would dominate the National League for nearly a decade following. Some of its features include the giant Coke bottle and Chick-Fil-A cow (who does the famous chop when the Braves hit homeruns) in the outfield, as well as the once Guiness World Record holding HD video board in center field. And you can’t help but notice all those pennants!

A few notes:

Despite only being 81, Turner felt like an oven in the sun. It was a hard go for my darling 7-month pregnant wife…but we managed to seek shelter in the shade often enough.

A bonus to this game was the post game concert put on in the infield by The Avett Brothers. I was late to the party on the Avetts, but had started listening to them a few weeks prior, in preparation for the concert. They absolutely didn’t disappoint, and are now one of my favorite current acts. Plus, it was really cool to experience a concert on a baseball field. (Sure, it wasn’t the Beatles at Wrigley, but it’ll do.)

One thing not lost on me in the moment was this would likely be my last opportunity to see a baseball legend in Chipper Jones. It was, and though he didn’t get a hit, it was still great to be in the presence of an all around baseball icon like Chipper. Seriously, in a game marred by steroids and controversy, he is one guy that has truly stood the test of time.

The game:

Philadelphia Phillies – 3
Atlanta Braves – 0

Sunday, April 10, 2011, 1:38PM
Time of Game: 2:20
Weather: 81° F, Sunny

Attendance: 43,796

Winning Pitcher: Cole Hamels (1-1)
Losing Pitcher: Derek Lowe (1-2)
Save: Jose Contreras (2)

The hot dog:

(Hot Dog ratings are for entertainment purposes only. Any resemblance to hot dogs, either real or fictional, is purely coincidental.)

Not a whole lot to say about the Atlanta dog. Not bad, not memorable. Bonus points for being a beautiful day for a dog and a ballgame.

Score (out of 5): 3.5 Dogs

3.5 Hotdogs

Now for photos!


Cheers, and play ball!

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