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Boshamer Stadium

Chapel Hill, NC

Home of the North Carolina Tar Heels

4.0

3.9

Boshamer Stadium (map it)
235 Ridge Rd
Chapel Hill, NC 27599


North Carolina Tar Heels website

Boshamer Stadium website

Year Opened: 1972

Capacity: 5,000

There are no tickets available at this time.

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The Bosh Is Posh

College baseball has its share of storied programs. Texas, LSU and South Carolina -- among many – are certainly in that discussion. When making a list of the elite in the game, however, North Carolina needs to be added to that group. The Tar Heels have become a perennial power in the Atlantic Coast Conference and across the country.

It is no great surprise, then, that a top national program should have an equally great home. North Carolina's Boshamer Stadium may not be the newest park in the conference – it was built in 1972 – but recent renovations and added creature comforts have transformed the facility into a building that can compete with almost any facility in the country and draw top recruits to Chapel Hill. The modern feel of this ballpark, combined with the complete inability to ignore the program's history once you are inside the gates, makes “The Bosh” a must-see destination for fans of college baseball in the southeastern United States and beyond.

4.0

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    5

Two concession stands can be found inside Boshamer Stadium. One is located along the concourse on the third base side, with the other at the end of the first base seating bowl. The third base stand contains items broken into three categories: Stadium Favorites, Ballpark Snacks and Cold Beverages. The Stadium Favorites category consists of a Firehouse Sub and chips ($7), Chick-fil-A sandwich and chips ($6), a slice of Papa John's pizza ($5), jumbo hot dogs or corn dogs ($4) and cheeseburgers with chips ($6). Many of the expected "munchies" are in the Ballpark Snacks category, such as nachos grande ($5), cotton candy ($6), pretzels ($4, with a cup of cheese for an additional $2) and popcorn ($5). Kettle corn is also available for $6, for those with a bit of a sweet tooth.

The third base stand also contains a few unusual items. Three different sandwiches are available for purchase for $8, all with a choice of sweet potato fries or waffle fries and a soda. There is a chicken and waffle sandwich, a Carolina melt sandwich (angus beef with melted cheese and bacon on toasted sourdough bread) and a barbecue sandwich with slaw. Weekends bring "platter" specials to Boshamer Stadium, offering an entree, two sides and a drink for $10. These offerings change every weekend, so check ahead if you are planning to investigate this option.

The first base stand (called the Bosh Pit Grill) also features the Cold Beverages and Ballpark Snacks categories, with the added option of the Grill Favorites entry. Along with the pizza and hot dog options that carry over from the third base side, options include cheeseburger combos ($6 with chips, $8 with fries), chicken tender combos ($7 with fries), Italian sausages or brats ($6) and french fries ($3 plain, $5 with chili and cheese).

Beverages consist of Coke products and are available from both stands, along with a few carts lined along the concourse. Small sodas and bottled water are $4, with regular sodas priced at $6. There is also a cart that offers smoothies or coffee. There are four different flavors of smoothies from which to choose.

Atmosphere    5

Boshamer Stadium presents a very visually appealing setting. The stadium itself is located along a narrow roadway (Ridge Road), with a brick walkway leading you to the main entry gates behind the plate. The Steinbrenner Family Courtyard is located near the main entrance. George Steinbrenner's daughter (Jenny) is a North Carolina graduate, and Steinbrenner's family contributed a large share of the finances to help renovate Boshamer Stadium. Groups of tall trees are visible beyond the outfield fence once you pass through the aforementioned entry gates, with the occasional peek through those trees of a residence hall or other campus building.

The concourse is, for the most part, rather wide and easy to navigate. When a standing room only crowd is in the building, as it was for the night I visited, many of the standing fans congregate near the top of each row, out of the lane of travel. The lines at the third base concession stand get quite long on busy nights, with the lines often stretching back to the Hall of Honor, which, combined with the bathrooms in the area, diminishes the free flow of foot traffic along the third base side. This should be kept in mind if your travels carry you to this side of the concourse.

While speaking of the third base side, the Tar Heels occupy the third base dugout. Though the famous Carolina blue can be found throughout the stands, the highest concentration of the color is found on this side of the field. On one hand, this is great, because you can sit among your fellow Tar Heel fans. This is also not so great, however, because the sun is quite often in your eyes for about the first half of an evening game, before it travels below the tree line. Be sure to bring your sunglasses for these seats, or pull down the brim on your hat.

A number of "box" seating areas are located along the first base side of the concourse. These are simply open-air areas separated by fencing. Several picnic tables are located behind these boxes, so if you want to have a picnic while watching a game - or just simply need to rest your legs from standing the entire game - this is a nice touch. Keep in mind, however, that your view may be a bit obstructed in this area.

There is one scoreboard in the park (located behind the wall in left-center), but it certainly serves its intended purpose. The board features an analog clock atop the main portion, flanked by brick pillars with the interlocking "NC" prominently featured. The scoreboard displays a photo and statistical information on the current batter, along with the occasional video replay. The number of the player at bat, the ball/strike/out count, a hit/error indicator, the pitch speed, the game's line score and the current time (in digital format) are also shown on the board. The numbers and letters on the board are in bright white lights, making the information easy to read throughout the park, no matter the time of day.

Neighborhood    3

For all of the beauty surrounding Boshamer Stadium, there is virtually nothing in the area in terms of dining or nightlife. Ridge Road, the road on which the ballpark sits, is a narrow neighborhood road that contains campus buildings, a parking deck, a small market and not much else. There is, in fact, quite little to see in the immediate vicinity, aside from UNC's attractive campus.

The real place where this venue earns its neighborhood score is the regionally famous Franklin Street. Located a mile (or more) from the park, Franklin Street offers a bevy of restaurants, bars and local hot spots. The roadway combines with Main Street in neighboring Carrboro to offer the area's preferred destination. 411 West Italian Cafe, Lantern and Crook's Corner are among the favorites of the locals. While there is plenty to enjoy along Franklin Street, be sure to bring a car, as none of these restaurants are easily reached on foot.

Fans    5

There are very few fan bases like North Carolina fans. Their blue colors are unmistakable, and there is never a problem with attendance at Boshamer Stadium. On the night I attended, noted rival Duke was the Tar Heels' opponent, and a standing room only crowd attended the game. Carolina fans know their baseball, and they turn out in droves to back their home nine. The power of the Carolina-Duke rivalry may have served to turn out such a large number, but the school's success on the diamond has surely made its own contribution.

Should you require further proof of the voracity of the Tar Heel fans, consider these two examples. I overheard a fan saying during my visit that he only owned one red t-shirt (Carolina's other main rival, NC State, predominantly wears red). He mentioned that the only time he wore that t-shirt was to buy tickets from fans at NC State. It also bears mention that Carolina and NC State set an all-time attendance record for both the ACC Tournament and any college baseball game in the state of North Carolina with a crowd of 10,229 at the 2012 ACC Tournament in Greensboro. NewBridge Bank Park, the site of the tournament, seats just under 7,500 fans.

Access    2

Boshamer Stadium's location presents a number of challenges, many of which we have already outlined. Parking, though, is quite possibly the most considerable challenge faced at the site. There is no parking (at least, not of the non-VIP variety) at the stadium site itself. This leaves fans with very few choices. The Rams Head Deck is a parking garage located about a five-minute walk from the stadium, and is the preferred choice of most fans. Be aware, however -- as I was not on this day -- that parking costs $5 in this garage. If you find yourself short on cash, there is free overflow parking located in a number of surface lots. These lots are a considerable walk (over ten minutes) from the stadium, though, and require you to cross a busy street (Manning Drive). Some parking is available on the street, but many of these spaces are signed for permit parking 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Read the signs carefully before leaving your car.

Once inside the stadium, lines are the theme of the day. During my visit, I often saw lines to purchase concessions, lines to use the restrooms and lines to do essentially anything inside the park. Restrooms are prominently signed and properly appointed, but there may be a delay in your accessing them.

Return on Investment    3

North Carolina baseball is always going to put on a solid product. The Tar Heels have risen to the top of the college baseball crop, and future professional talent will be on display every time the home team takes the field in Chapel Hill.

Even with this being the case, North Carolina baseball is not necessarily a cheap ticket. Concession prices are steep -- in some cases, higher than some minor league parks -- which can take a bit of a bite out of your wallet while you're taking a bite out of that hot dog. The cheapest seats are found in the grandstand along either baseline for $7. Reserved seats in the main area (behind the plate) go for $10. If you purchase a ticket on either baseline, park your car, buy a hot dog and a regular soda, this already totals $20. This is before anything else you may purchase as a souvenir. The price for a family of four could very easily approach -- or exceed -- $100 at a Carolina game, which might be a bit much to some.

Extras    5

If there is ever any doubt about North Carolina's success on the diamond, that doubt will quickly fade within seconds of entering the Boshamer Stadium gates. The most prominent tribute to Carolina's past is the Hall of Honor, located between the home plate and third base areas. Tar Heel memorabilia honoring the numerous championship teams, record setters and trips to Omaha lines the walls of this mini-museum. A draft board lines one wall, showing some of the more prominent MLB draft picks in Carolina's history. Another wall plays a highlight video of Tar Heel trips to Omaha, along with a display of rings commemorating UNC's World Series trips, encased with actual Rosenblatt Stadium dirt. Two seats from Rosenblatt Stadium are also prominently displayed. The museum also features a wall that opens up to the stadium, allowing fans to keep up with the action while looking at the displays.

Signs hang from the concourse roof in honor of great Tar Heel players and teams. Whether they commemorate the 60-plus players who once donned the Carolina blue and reached the majors, the many College World Series teams or simply displaying a picture of TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha with the simple message, "Omaha...Where the Tar Heels Play", nearly every step you take through the stadium educates you on Carolina's baseball history. There is also a wall just outside the Hall of Honor that pays tribute to Carolina's National Players of the Year.

An informational screen hangs along the wall just inside the entrance. This screen displays the lineups for both teams, the current time and temperature and statistical information. A news crawl also keeps fans up to date with what is taking place around the world of sports. For fans keeping score at the game -- and there were some doing just that -- this is a helpful companion to the video board in left-center field.

A souvenir stand is located on the concourse, just behind the plate. The stand sells all of the expected North Carolina logo gear, including t-shirts, hats and polo shirts. Almost any item you may want to purchase to demonstrate your Carolina pride can be purchased at the stand. This is a nice addition to any park at this level, and it was quite popular with the fans on the night I visited.

Finally, it should be mentioned that the night of my visit was Military Appreciation Night at Boshamer Stadium. The university welcomed a soldier on one-day leave to the field during the exchange of lineup cards, drawing a thundering ovation from the crowd. Military-themed trivia questions were asked between innings, while a Twitter contest asking fans why they loved the United States armed forces earned one lucky fan a prize late in the game. This was topped off with a military-themed fireworks display to end the evening. North Carolina is known for being a state with a large military presence, and this was a great way to honor those who serve.

Final Thoughts

While the bigs may have their share of "cathedrals", there are few destinations classified as "must-see" by most fans. Though it has passed forty years of service, Boshamer Stadium has received a number of upgrades, resulting in a level of beauty and comfort rivaled by few. If you plan a family trip to the beach or a journey through the Tar Heel State, make sure your travels lead you to a seat at Boshamer Stadium.

Boshamer Stadium

While I have commented before on how pretty this ballpark is,it does seem to have it's drawbacks.I was surprised to read that the access and neighborhood was less than desirable.Judging by the parking and concessions,it is designed to get maximum dollars from the patrons.I was also not too crazy to read about the lines,as I personally hate lines.
Other than that,it is probably a really good place to see solid baseball,as Carolina has a solid program,and everybody is shooting at them.Great review,as always.

by jerry | Apr 29, 2013 12:40 PM

Boshamer Stadium

Hands down I believe this is the best stadium to watch and play college baseball in as I find it unbelievably beautiful. Great review, but the capacity is actually 5,000 not 4,100

by Diamond Nine | Jun 21, 2014 04:17 PM

Boshamer Capacity

Just as an FYI, when we created the review, we went with the 4,100 capacity that was listed in several locations. Now that standing room is listed up to 5,000 -- and I saw every bit of that in the standing room when I was there -- I'll update the capacity. Thanks for reading!

by brian | Jun 22, 2014 12:44 AM

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Crowd Reviews

Tradition

Total Score: 3.86

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 5

Boshamer Stadium is definitely a cool place to see a college baseball game. The park feels larger than it is and has a minor league baseball feel to it. The night I was in attendance was $1 hot dogs and sodas night which is hard to complain about. The seats are comfortable and students turn out pretty well for the games. Parking is kind of a pain, but the Rams Head garage is right down the street and charges $5. Lots around the stadium are all student or faculty, so this is basically your only option.

By far the coolest attribute of this park is the Hall of Fame. The old jerseys, game used bats and trophies definitely tell the story of a great baseball program full of legendary names. Overall, a cool experience.

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Local Food & Drink

411 West Italian Cafe  (map it!)

411 W Franklin St

Chapel Hill, NC 27515

(919) 967-2782

http://www.411west.com

Lantern  (map it!)

423 W Franklin St

Chapel Hill, NC 27516

(919) 969-8846

http://www.lanternrestaurant.com

Crook's Corner  (map it!)

610 W Franklin St

Chapel Hill, NC 27516

(919) 929-7643

http://www.crookscorner.com

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