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Official Review by Matt Fiedler, Stadium Journey Special Correspondent
Dodd Stadium has hosted minor league baseball since 1995. The team name, affiliation, level have all changed, but Dodd Stadium has been the one constant. When the Connecticut Defenders left Dodd Stadium in 2010 and became the Richmond Flying Squirrels, the Oneonta Tigers decided to move to Norwich and become the current tenant, the Connecticut Tigers. Dodd Stadium is named for former Senator Thomas J. Dodd. The team has enjoyed success recently, and hosted the 2013 New York-Penn League All Star Game.
The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:
Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
Dodd Stadium has all of the standard stadium fare with a few unique offerings. Hot dogs, pretzels, popcorn, peanuts, and all of the other stadium staples are available. Dodd Stadium sells Pepsi products. There are a number of solid beer options. There is the hole in the wall bar where beers are $2 on thirsty Thursdays. There is also Southpaws bar out on the left field concourse. I would recommend checking out Philly's on the left field concourse. They offer great philly cheesesteaks, and have even been recognized by the Travel Channel. There is also the burger barn as well as Ben and Jerry's.
The Dodd Stadium staff does a great job of keeping the fans into the game. There are many on field promotions, from tossing Frisbees into a pizza box, to a kid racing the mascot. The atmosphere is very family friendly. The staff is friendly and very helpful. There are also theme nights and a great variety of music. The Tigers also honor their former namesake once a year when they become the Norwich Navigators for one time per year.
The area around Dodd Stadium is not a tough area or filled with crime. The problem with the neighborhood is that there is not much around. Dodd Stadium is located in an industrial park. To get to any restaurants or entertainment, you will have to drive a short distance into the city of Norwich. The area around the stadium is a pretty safe area. Police are always around the stadium to add an additional layer of comfort and they help direct fans to leave after the game. Downtown Norwich can be a rougher area if you choose to go there for entertainment or food.
The fans at Dodd Stadium are your typical minor league baseball fans. There are a few die hard fans in the crowd, and they definitely know their stuff. The majority of fans are families, which means many children. The Connecticut Tigers do a great job of making the game fun for kids and families. From on field promotions to running the bases after a game, there are many things for kids to do at Dodd Stadium. Behind the BBQ area in left field is a kids zone where kids can enjoy many games and inflatable slides.
Despite the lack of public transportation, Dodd Stadium is pretty easy to get to. If you get off of exit 14 on 395 you just follow the signs and you will arrive at the stadium. The stadium is in an industrial park, but it has many signs in it that show where to go to get to the stadium. Once inside the stadium, it is very easy to navigate. There is ample room to move around, and the bathrooms are spacious. Most of the time you won't have long lines at the concession stand. There is also handicapped seating at the top of the concourses for those who need it. There is plenty of room to move around at Dodd Stadium.
Ticket prices at Dodd Stadium are very affordable. Premium level seating costs just $10. Reserved level seats are $9, and grandstand tickets are just $8. Kids and seniors get a dollar off of their tickets, and veterans can take $2 off. There are also numerous ticket specials throughout the season. Parking at Dodd Stadium is just $3 and when you factor in the low cost of food, this is a very affordable price for a ballgame. There is also the Yard Bar and Grill. This is located in the suite level, and includes a full menu and bar. A ticket to this area is just $20.
One star goes to the great amenities at Dodd Stadium. The BBQ area, a few unique bars, and a great souvenir stand are just a few of the standouts. The BBQ area can be reserved for a large party or gathering.
A second star goes to the effort the staff puts in. From the people running the box office, to the on field promotions staff, to the video board operator, it is a smooth operation all around. The fan experience is really enhanced by the great job the staff do.
A final star is awarded to the many events that this stadium hosts during the off season. High school baseball, college baseball, auto shows, and even Relay for Life are all events that Dodd Stadium hosts.
Dodd Stadium is a bit of an adventure to find if you have never been to it, but once you get to it, it is a fine minor league experience! The food, parking, and tickets all will not hurt your wallet. You will also see some fine young players who are fighting their way to make it to the majors. If you are looking for cheap, entertaining, and well played baseball, Dodd Stadium is the place for you.
Member Review by Dan Van Wie on Jul 31, 2012
Dodd Stadium is home for the Connecticut Tigers; the Class A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. The stadium opened in 1995 and over the years it has been home to the AA team of the New York Yankees and the San Francisco Giants. Since 2009, Dodd Stadium has been home to the Class A Detroit Tigers.
The dimensions of the stadium are 309’ down both the left field and right field lines. Center field is 401’ feet away. The fences are eight feet tall around the entire outfield.
The record crowd for Dodd Stadium occurred in 2002 when they hosted the AA All Star Game. The turnout to see the game was 8,009.
Member Review by woof on May 07, 2015
Good but team sucks. Great food but is clean.
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