Huntington Park
Columbus, Ohio
Year Opened
2009

Current Team
Columbus Clippers

Affiliate
Cleveland Indians

League
International League

Capacity
10,000

Location Map

My Grades
Stadium A- Atmosphere B+ Concessions A

Photos taken in 2009
With the opening of Huntington Park in 2009, one of the last classic ballparks, Cooper Stadium, is now just part of Columbus baseball history. While I'd always rather see the classic survive, I do understand the need for a new ballpark, especially in a big city like Columbus. At least they did it mostly right here. There are a few aspects I don't like about Huntington Park, but overall this is a fine new ballpark. Located in the Arena District, the park has a downtown setting, something that I always prefer. The main entrance to the park is actually in center field, meaning that the home plate entrance (which is beautiful) is underutilized and a bit hidden. One of the nice features on the exterior is that the right field wall is open to the street, allowing passerbys to peer in. No spite fence here ! The interior features a similar layout to most other new parks, but does have several characteristics that make it unique. The first of these is the two sided concourse. On the backside are the bathrooms and a few beverage carts, while on the ends there are concessions stands. The front side, which is open to the field, doesn't have any amenities, so is mostly used as standing room or for fans who like to wander. The main concession stands are also distinct here, as they are four sided and in complete view of the field. This is one park where you truly can get concessions and watch the game at the same time. In left field, there is a large three-story building, which features concession stands and the team store on the first level, a restaurant/bar on the second level, and a group picnic area on the top level. The restaurant contains some historic memorabilia, though I wish the Clippers had put this along the main concourse, where more fans would be able to see it. The concourse does feature lots of picnic tables and counters, especially in the right field and left field corners, another amenity that I always enjoy. One feature that Huntington Park is lacking is a full wraparound concourse. For some reason, the architect decided not to connect the center field and right field concourses. To me, this always makes a ballpark feel a bit tighter, especially when there are large crowds. My biggest complaint here is with the seating areas. While I love the steepness of the seating bowl, which allows for great views of the field, I don't like how the park has so many exclusive seating areas. The box seats behind home plate have their own entrance, so are completely inaccessible to the average fan. And the loge seats, which start at the back of the home plate box seats and continue to the press box, block the view from the concourse. This means that it is impossible to get a photo from directly behind home plate unless you have a seat in one of these areas. Also, there is a second deck in right field, which looks pretty neat, but which is also off-limits to the general public. Besides the chair back seats, there are also bleachers in left field and a small grassy berm in left-center field. The atmosphere at Huntington Park is actually a bit crazier than I would expect for a AAA team, but isn't intolerable. They do several between inning games like the rooster toss, the dice game, and the hot dog race in addition to throwing t-shirts into the crowd several times. Maybe it was just where I was sitting, but the PA system seemed to be muffled and quite echoey. The large videoboard in right field is utilized well to display the essential game info. Unfortunately, the auxiliary scoreboards, located along the concourse, are a bit too small to be seen well from the outfield seats. Food options here are well varied and seem to provide a good value. Brats, burgers, wraps, paninis, and BBQ are some of the concessions available. Huntington Park is definitely a worthy replacement for Cooper Stadium. The downtown location combined with some distinctive design elements make it a must-see for any ballpark fan. I just wish it didn't feel quite so exclusive.
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