Dodd Stadium (map it)
14 Stott Ave
Norwich, CT 06360
Year Opened: 1995
There are no tickets available at this time.
Official Review by Dan Van Wie, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
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.
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".
There is a wide range of food and beverage choices available at Dodd Stadium. Some of the concessions are cash only, so don't be caught short on cash coming to the park.
At the Burger Barn, located down the right field line, you can find a nice array of burgers to select from ; which include the Bleu Burger, Baked Potato Burger, Hawaiian Burger, Andrew Graham Burger (named after the team's manager, which is the one I tried and it was delicious), and their best seller, the Rodeo Burger. Burgers run from $7-$8 dollars and come with chips.
Other offerings around the stadium include nachos, hot dogs, fried dough and other standard baseball park fare. There is also a Ben and Jerry's location for ice cream lovers.
As for beverages, there is another location along the right field line called the "Hole in the Wall Bar", where you will find a very nice menu of beers and other drinks for purchase. You can find standard bottled beer like Budweiser and Sierra Nevada, for $5 to a number of local draft beers like Blonde on Blonde and Naughty Nurse. I opted for the Naughty Nurse and I would order that again. It was a very good beer.
The prices for both the food and beverages were reasonably priced and a much better deal than you typically find at major league park concession stands.
The staff at Dodd Stadium put out a quality product. There was some kind of interaction with the crowd throughout the game, whether it was a contest between half-innings, or shooting up tee-shirts into the crowd, or a fan racing the bases against the team mascot. There was plenty of music and an active scoreboard to entertain fans throughout the game as well.
The low ranking of the neighborhood isn't done because it is a bad neighborhood or it dangerous or anything like that. The stadium can be found atop a long road that runs through an industrial park. If you are looking for a local restaurant to enjoy a meal before the game, there isn't one. There aren't any local homes for fans to walk to the game; it is purely an industrial park area, so there just isn't much going on in the area other than the game itself.
The crowd didn't seem very lively all night during my most recent visit, but that could have easily been a reflection of the product on the field, as the Connecticut Tigers were shut out 2-0 by the State College Spikes. The Tigers only managed seven hits and committed three errors. The game was over very fast, in a blazing 2:07.
The announced crowd size of 1,060 were on hand to see the Tigers get shut out for the only shut out in the month of July 2012, so it's very conceivable that my opinion could be greatly changed if they had scored five or seven runs. Dodd Stadium has a seating capacity of 6,270 people.
The fans that I interacted with were friendly enough and as I mentioned before were well-entertained by the Dodd Stadium staff.
Because of the smaller crowd (1,060), there was plenty of parking to be had, and it was extremely reasonable at $3 per car. The access in the stadium offered a wide concourse to move around easily.
Once you reach the industrial park, you have to be prepared to keep driving through the park and keep on the lookout for signs pointing to Dodd Stadium. If it seems that the industrial park road is taking a long time to converse, that is because it isn't a short drive. Be patient and you will find it okay.
The ticket prices were very reasonable with grandstand tickets ($7), reserved box seats ($8), premium box seats ($10) and tickets for the Yard Bar and Grill which overlooks the stadium from the top tier ($20).
Dodd Stadium had a special offer running Wednesday night that promoted a buy one ticket and get the second ticket free, which was combined with owning a card from a local store.
Between the ticket prices, the food and beverage deals and the low parking fee, this is a very strong return on investment for an entire family, or if you just want to go catch a game by yourself.
There is a barbecue pit area that can be reserved for larger parties located down the left field line.
Over the years, Dodd Stadium has seen a number of players coming through on rehab assignments or that had played their minor league ball here before ascending to the majors. Examples over the years include Matt Cain, David Justice, David Cone, Andy Pettitte, Bernie Williams, Hideki Irabu and Roger Clemens.
Dodd Stadium offers private luxury boxes that can sit up to 20 people, and a double suite that sits up to 40 people.
The Yard Bar and Grill is open to all ticket holders. There is a pre-game BBQ Picnic area that fans can enjoy as well.
The park is very pleasing to the eye. It is a very good deal for your entertainment dollar, even if you have to endure the drive through the industrial park to get there. Good food and fun for the whole family makes for an enjoyable visit to Dodd Stadium.
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