Centene Stadium
Great Falls, Montana
Year Opened
1940

Current Team
Great Falls Voyagers

Affiliate
Chicago White Sox

League
Pioneer League

Capacity
4,000

Location Map

My Grades
Stadium A- Atmosphere A- Concessions B

Photos taken in 2006
Centene Stadium (formerly Legion Park) is in the midst of a major renovation project as of 2006. At the Rookie League level, this is the way to go. While Billings has been discussing knocking down Cobb Field and rebuilding, Great Falls has taken the route of slowly renovating the existing ballpark. And the results so far are fantastic as they have been able to keep the essence of the old ballpark. Located north of the downtown and close-by to the Missouri River, Centene Stadium does not have the best of settings. There is no view behind the outfield wall and located adjacent to the ballpark is a General Mills flour plant. As of late 2006, the ballpark basically has two distinct sections - the original ballpark section and the new section. But the integration between the two is well done. The original covered grandstand has about 10 rows of box seats as well as metal bleachers. The new section, located down the third base line, consists of box seats, as well as some bleachers, a picnic porch and a grassy berm area. There is also a very old wooden bleacher section down the first base side which is scheduled to be removed when that side of the ballpark is renovated. As with other older ballparks, the sightlines are not always great. There is a fence or netting which seems to obscure the view from almost every seat in the house. The concourse runs beneath the grandstand and features several concessions stands. The gift shop and team hall of fame are located in the new section. While the hall of fame contains lots of memorabilia from past seasons, its location is a bit hidden and didn't seem to be getting much traffic. Concessions at Centene Stadium are average at best. The variety is decent (sausages, burgers, super nachos), but the quality isn't too good. Fortunately the prices are quite cheap. One highlight of the concessions is that they offer TCBY and smoothies (from the "Smooth Operator down the RF line). As with other parks in this part of the country, the atmosphere is pretty laid back. The team does do lots of between inning games and there are some effects played, but overall fans seems to be into the game. A couple of interesting things to note, which I don't ever recall seeing. First, the national anthem was sung by the PA announcer. He didn't have the best voice, but certainly didn't seem embarrassed. Also, the pledge of allegiance was done during the 7th inning stretch. It's these type of unique touches that really add a lot of charm to the minor league experience. With so many teams having a script they follow for their game day operations, it is quite refreshing to see teams that do things a bit differently. Centene Stadium is a great little ballpark that should only get better with the next set of renovations. Another must see ballpark in the state of Montana.
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