Wednesday, April 24, 2013

FIELDS OF DREAMS - Lake Elsinore Diamond, Lake Elsinore, California

UpTake Travel Gem

The home of the single A Storm is a true "diamond in the rough." Here is an updated look.
Lake Elsinore Diamond is the home of the single-A, minor league Lake Elsinore Storm baseball team, an affiliate of the San Diego Padres.  As such, current (and former) Padres stars such as Jake Peavy and Ben Johnson have done time here.  Before the Padres, they were afiliated with the Angels, so if you were here at a certain time, you'd have seen future Halos like Darin Erstad, John Lackey, and Frankie Rodriguez.  Here are the stats:

Picture courtesy of Wikimedia
Dirk Hansen under CC-BY license

Lake Elsinore Diamond
Opened: 1994
Surface: Grass
Construction cost: $22 million
Capacity: 6,066
Field Dimensions: Left Field-330 ft., Centerfield-400 ft., Right Field-310 ft.
Home teams: Lake Elsinore Storm (California League) 1994-present
Events Attended: 3 games

This is one of the best accessible stadiums I've seen.  Wheelchairs can enter through any gate, which will deposit you right onto the field level concourse.  Chairs sit at the top of the field level, like many stadiums.  There are no obstructions at all.  The councourse is open, so if you go to the snack bar you can still see the game.

No one, and I mean no one, has a better ticket purchasing system for wheelchair users.  Online ticketing is available on their site.  First you pick which level of ticket you want.  Next, a seating chart is presented and you just click on the seats you want...some of which are labeled as accessible.  It's easy to arrange your group with this system.  Last time we went, the seating chart option made it easy to see that our group would be better arranged with the wheelchair and three companions in the top row with the four people who made up the rest of our group directly in front instead of spread out down the row.

It can get very hot here but a roof has been built over the seats giving you shade.  A generous amount of handicapped parking spots are available right at the gate.  Ticket prices range from $10 to $14.  Another feature I like are their promotions.  Margarita Mondays feature $2 margaritas. Wednesday is Wacky Weenie day with free hot dogs. Thursdays are Thirsty Thursdays with $1 beer.  Every Friday home game has a fireworks show afterward.

The only knock I has was that there are not many lodging options in Lake Elsinore.  It's a 90-minute drive in good traffic from my house and I'd like to have the option to spend the night, but new hotels are opening.  There's now a Holiday Inn Express, a Quality Inn, and a Best Western in town. 

All in all, a great place to see a game.

Copyright 2012 - Darryl Musick
All Rights Reserved
Updated for 2013

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