Riley Park
Charleston, South Carolina
Year Opened
1996

Current Team
Charleston Riverdogs

Affiliate
New York Yankees

League
South Atlantic League

Capacity
6,000

Location Map

My Grades
Stadium B+ Atmosphere B- Concessions B+

Photos taken in 2002
Well here's one newer park that doesn't fit the standard template. While the template is fine, it's nice to see some cities try something different. And that's exactly what Charleston did. Despite having plenty of space to work with, the designers decided to put many odd angles in the outfield - the strangest of which is in the left field corner where the outfield fence goes literally straight back after the foul pole. The concourse is set behind the seating areas and almost completely uncovered. It features several concession stands and a small gift store. Concessions were on the whole average in quality, variety, and price. One complaint I had about the concourse is that all the concessions seem to bunched up on the third base side, leaving the first base side of the concourse with the feel of dead space. The seating is made up of box seats below the concourse, and benches (with backs) above the concourse. A small roof covers the last several rows of bench seating. There are two picnic areas - one down the right field line, and one at the top of the seating on the third base side. For all the talk of Mike Veeck being a promotional genius, I didn't notice much unique. The standard between inning games were played (sumo wrestling, race the mascot, etc.) and many of the same sound effects were used. Music is blared a bit too loud, especially when the PA announcer is trying to talk over it. I was also disappointed that the starting lineups were not announced - one of the only parks I've encountered that doesn't do this. I had read many articles about how scenic Riley Park is, but I didn't get the same impression. The river is not in view and there are many trees/shrubs that are blocking the view beyond the outfield fence. Actually, trees surround the park giving it almost a hidden feel. Parking is plentiful in surface lots, but is a bit expensive ($3-$4) and far from the park. Overall, I enjoyed my visit to Riley Park as it's nice to see a park built in different mold, but there were a few aspects with regard to the atmosphere and the park that could use some improvement.
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