The Dodgers official spring training report date is February 15th, making it time for your primer on their spring home. Camelback Ranch has been the Dodger’s spring training facility since it opened in 2009. The first question one might ask: how did it get it’s unique name?
The facility – spanning 125 acres – sits off Camelback road in Glendale, Arizona. A group called HKS Architects created the stadium and surroundings with a Sonoran-desert design in mind. When you picture ‘Camelback Ranch’ in your mind, it’s likely to look a lot like the image you dream of.
The Bells & Whistles
Going to a spring training game often has a unique, laid-back feeling to it. It’s important that the stadium experience creates a memorable backdrop, since the action seen won’t always be spectacular. Camelback Ranch accomplishes this in it’s own skin. Some of it’s features include:
- 10,000 seats, including 3,000 in a grass berm. The stadium has a suite-level party deck, and several outfield terraces that can be used as party areas.
- The Dodgers share the facility with the Chicago White Sox. A fish-stocked lake separates the two teams while providing some unique landscape.
- There are over 5,000 plants and trees on the premises, including an orange grove. Since you officially know you’re at spring training when you see an orange or grapefruit.
- Rock retaining walls with caramel colored seats. Visitors will see an array of Arizona desert-looking colors around the park.
- Many natural stone and purposefully rusted metal panels will be seen around the park for effect.
- The main entrance pavilion is located in centerfield.
- A band is on-site for pre-game entertainment purposes.
- A Walk of Fame along the water outside the stadium.
Some lucky folks who are reading this probably have already made your arrangements made and schedules set to see this vast landscape of baseball beauty in a short time. I would like to say to you that: 1) I’m envious and 2) feel free to take me with you, my wife and kids won’t miss me.
The excitement of spring training baseball isn’t that you’re going to see Clayton Kershaw throw seven innings. It’s that you’re going to see Kershaw before millions of others for the first time in 2018. You’re going to smell the hot dogs, the beer, and crack peanuts before so many of us have the privilege.
There are probably a lot of fans who have to choose between a big road trip during the season, a postseason game, or a trip to this baseball heaven in Arizona. If you have plenty of money and resources at your disposal, there aren’t many spring training destinations that will do a better job of delivering the ultimate baseball season kickoff experience.
Virtual Sneak Peak
For those of you who can’t afford a dream trip to see the Dodgers in their spring home, worry not. We have a sneak peak for you right here.
What we’re all guaranteed is real, live baseball in a very short time. The Dodgers and White Sox play one another on February 23. We hope you’ve enjoyed our small feature on one of the spring’s best home away from homes.
If you’ve been to Camelback Ranch before, what was your favorite feature? For the lucky fans headed there for the first time in 2018, tell us in the comments what you’re most looking forward to seeing!
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