Family Travel: Take Them Out to the Ballgame in San Diego, Flickr: dnak

Vist the Park in the Park!

San Diego may not be the most historic baseball site, but it certainly offers baseball fans an incredibly family-friendly experience.

The San Diego Padres make their home at Petco Park, built in 2004 in the heart of downtown San Diego just steps from the bay.  Taking kids to a ballgame can be an intimidating experience if they aren’t too versed in baseball, but Petco takes the worry out of every parent’s mind. 

In addition to offering a world-class and exceptionally beautiful stadium, the park is one of the most family-friendly parks in baseball.  The area behind center field is known as the “Park at the Park.”  No matter where your ticket to the game is, you can visit this area to give your little ones the chance to run around and get some energy out, all while you still enjoy great views of the game.  A miniature baseball diamond offers kids the chance to pretend to be in the big leagues.  Kids of all ages pretend to hit one out of the park and then run the bases with glee.  Kudos to Petco for creating a park that allows kids to use their imagination to get even more involved in the game.  If running bases gets too tiresome, plop down on the expanse of green, grassy hills that rise up above center field to eat some snacks and watch more of the game.

The center field seating, also known as “the Beach,” is another great place to take families.  Just below the bleacher lined seats, right up against the center field fence, lies a huge sand-castle making, toe-wiggling beach experience.  Soft, white sand has been imported into this area and  toys are available for little ones to make their own creation while you watch the game from this vantage point.

Older kids will love a quick visit between innings to the Padres Power Alley, located under the right field bleachers.  Try your best at the batting cages or simulated pitching game.  The area also hosts a tribute to the military with a model of the USS Midway and a homage to MLB’s armed service member players. 

If your kids are really into baseball, take the tour before a game to go behind the scenes of the park.  Walk where the players walk, visit the press box, and check out the Padres’ Hall of Fame located in the Western Metal Supply Co. Building in left field.  The tour is a fun and interactive way to learn more about baseball and Padres history; it also gets you in the gates very early, so you can catch batting practice from a close-up dugout leaning view!

Visit Petco Park and the Padres with your family.  Tickets start as low as $5/person and kids under 36” can enjoy the game for free.


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photo: dnak

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