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Dutchess Stadium

Wappingers Falls, NY

Home of the Hudson Valley Renegades

3.1

2.1

Dutchess Stadium (map it)
1500 Route 9D
Wappingers Falls, NY 12590


Hudson Valley Renegades website

Dutchess Stadium website

Year Opened: 1994

Capacity: 4,494

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Unmasking Dutchess Stadium

Following a ground breaking ceremony on January 20, 1994, the Hudson Valley Renegades began their baseball existence less than just five months late. Dutchess Stadium opened on June 18th of that year, joining in on the minor league baseball boom of the 1990s that saw the construction of many new ballparks across the country. This is a rather remarkable accomplishment considering the brutal weather this area endures during the winter months, so to say that the organization and its fans were anxious would be an absolute understatement. “The Dutch”, which it is commonly referred to as by locals, seats nearly 5,000 fans and has been affiliated with the Tampa Bay Rays since their Major League infancy, playing in the Short-Season “A” New York-Penn League. It is a two-tiered facility with a main concourse that runs from the left field to right and features picnic areas at the ends of each and a children’s play area in left. Box seating occupies the entire first level save for two general admission areas in the far left and right corners.

3.1

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    3

Unlike its fellow New York-Penn League entrants who have limited options when it comes to food and beverages, Dutchess Stadium has plenty to offer the starving and thirsty. Eben's Eatery, located on the 1st base side of the stadium seemed to be the most popular choice with the young and old for your ballpark staples like hot dogs and cheeseburgers, but it did seem a bit over-priced for minor league concessions. The Healthy Hut, located just steps from the aforementioned eatery serves up lighter and more nutritional options like a house salad with grilled chicken, a veggie burger or a gluten-free chicken wrap for those with gluten allergies. On the 3rd base side of the ballpark you can find an ice cream shop (Rascal's) for the kiddos which has a variety of tasty treats including ice cream sandwiches, floats, and sundaes.

Popular in the cuisine scene at "The Dutch" is the Crackerjack Burger, a 6oz Angus beef burger served on a pretzel roll encrusted with Cracker Jacks. This twist on the classic burger is filled with caramel aioli, bourbon bacon, pepper jack cheese and a steak sauce. And keeping true to the Cracker Jack tradition, the sandwich even comes with a prize. Another is the Southern Hudson Comfort sandwich which was nominated as a best stadium food option in the country in an online contest at MILB.com. This unique dish can be described as a Belgian waffle baked with scallions, bacon and cheddar and generously topped with chicken tenders, crispy bacon, pepper jack cheese, lettuce, tomato and finished off with a delightful honey bourbon BBQ sauce. If the opportunity to see a few future major leaguers in action isn't enough to get you out to the ballpark one of these delicacies is sure to.

Atmosphere    3

It has been 20 plus seasons now and the shine has definitely lost some of its luster, however, Dutchess Stadium still manages to score great crowds and this can be attributed in part to its fan friendliness and quite possibly their overzealous, witty and very vocal long-time public address announcer, Rick Zolzer. However, if you are a baseball traditionalist, which is seemingly a minority amongst minor league fans nowadays, you will not enjoy his style, nor find his antics entertaining, as the long-time broadcaster often talks during pitches, which is highly uncommon and quite annoying to the conventional fan. Fans do love his enthusiasm though, which at times can become contagious and they are outwardly energetic which can create a great atmosphere for taking in a game. The club's mascots, Rookie Raccoon, Rookie's wife Rene Gade, their son Rascal and occasionally, Rookie's father Roofus along with the in-between inning on-field antics keep the younger fans tuned in and attentive to the action. Unfortunately, for the aforementioned traditionalist, this is way over the top and quite chaotic and he/she is probably left wondering why there hasn't been a red and white bale ring big top tent placed over top of the spectacle.

Neighborhood    3

The ballpark is located on the scenic eastern shore of the Hudson River in Fishkill, New York, a small little city with a population of roughly 22,000 and lies between the cities of Poughkeepsie and Beacon, to the north and south respectively, so there are plenty of drinking and dining opportunities within a short ride of the park as well as things to do outside of the game. The Dutchess Biercafe is a quaint little spot with a Belgium flare in Fishkill with a large draft beer selection and fabulous food. Another option is the Ice House On the Hudson, a restaurant with historic charm, an expansive patio directly on the water's edge and a majestic view of the Hudson River which was worth the 20 minute drive alone. If you need to cool off before the game, head over to SplashDown Beach Water Park, this cool spot is located in Fishkill and is self-proclaimed America's Biggest Little waterpark.

Fans    4

The Renegades continue to make an impressive showing at the box office. They finished second in the New York-Penn League in overall and average attendance last season, with 163,767 and 4,426, respectively. And during a midseason contest with the Brooklyn Cyclones, the Renegades set a franchise single-game attendance record of 5,601 surpassing their previous high of 5,525. And there have been no signs of slowing down at the gates this season as they are on pace to attain the same success and quite possibly top it with a championship run. The Goldklang Group, a well-respected ownership group that counts as many as four franchises in their impressive portfolio does a fabulous job of putting fans in the seats with a combination of popular promotions, giveaways and entertainment.

Access    3

Dutchess Stadium is very easily accessible as it is less than one mile off of exit 11 of I-84 on Rt. 9D approximately 60 miles north of New York City and 90 miles south of Albany. There is only one entrance into the parking area so you should plan to arrive a little extra early unless you enjoy your patience being tested. Exiting the ballpark's parking lot following a game can sometimes cause you to question yourself as to why you came in the first place. It is that horrid. Navigating the stadium is extremely easy and you can stroll effortlessly from one end of the stadium to the other and to any areas in between.

Return on Investment    3

We have determined the ROI to be positive but the gains moderate at best thanks largely in part to the slightly higher than average (NY-Penn League) concessions pricing. The Renegades do serve a Hebrew National hot dog that is larger than you'll find at most parks so I can give them a pass on this ballpark staple's $6 price tag but not the other seemingly more expensive offerings. The $5 parking fee although not a wallet-buster, is also pricier than their fellow NY-Penn counterparts whom the majority offers free parking. Tickets are well within the average of short-season baseball clubs as a Premium Box seat will cost you $15 and a General Admission ticket will set you back just $6, but I am not in agreement with the additional $2 charge on fireworks nights as I find that to be very frivolous and "bush league".

Extras    3

On strictly a baseball note, it is really exciting to get out and catch a glimpse of our national pastime's future stars and seeing them in action before anyone else has. The New York-Penn League is a likely destination for the newest MLB First Player Draft's more advanced selections and Renegades fans have been privileged to get the first looks at stars like Evan Longoria and Josh Hamilton and quite possibly newest additions Ryan Boldt and Jake Fraley.

On a not so baseball note, the promotions team in the front office does a tremendous job here continuously staging great promotions and themed nights like Minion Night, Star Wars: The Field Awakens Night, A Christmas in July Sleepover and a Wade Davis Bobble Head Night, honoring last season's World Series hero who got his start pitching at Hudson Valley.

The Corona Cantina is a lively general admission option located adjacent to the other general admission area in right field that allows you to mingle prior to and during the game with alcoholic beverage in hand for the princely sum of $6.

Final Thoughts

Dutchess Stadium is just one of those places where nothing spectacular stands out one way or another, but you would probably return if you had the opportunity.

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Crowd Reviews

Dutchess Stadium

Total Score: 3.00

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 3

Since 1994, the Renegades have become a summer staple in the Hudson Valley region of New York State. Short season NY-Penn League teams only have 37 home games and fans make sure they fill "The Dutch" for each one of them. Although the ballpark is not anything special, the Renegades make up for it with a great selection of concessions and an interesting variety of promotions. The Goldklang Group owns the team and one of the owners is Mike Veeck, son of Bill who set the standard for bringing fans out with promotions. Despite the distractions, fans still have interest and passion for their team and the game.

If you like baseball, stay away ...

Total Score: 1.14

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 0
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 1
  • Access: 1
  • RoI: 1
  • Extras: 0

Dutchess Stadium offers a horrible atmosphere for taking in a ballgame. There are incessant sound effects, families who have no interest in the game, and a PA announcer who thinks he is the entertainment. Besides that, Dutchess Stadium is a very basic ballpark with little to make it memorable. Check out my full review if you want to read more.

http://ballparkreviews.com/template2.php?in_name=Dutchess%20Stadium&in_city=Fishkill&in_state=New%20York

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Local Food & Drink

Leo's Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria  (map it!)

1475 Route 9D

Wappingers Falls, NY 12590

(845) 838-3446

http://www.leospizzeria.com/

Dutchess Biercafe  (map it!)

1097 Main St.

Fishkill, NY 12524

(845) 440-7747

http://www.thedutchessbiercafe.com/

Hudson's Ribs and Fish  (map it!)

1099 US Rte 9

Fishkill, NY 12524

(845) 297-5002

http://hudsonsribsandfish.com/

Mill House Brewing Company  (map it!)

289 Mill St.

Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

(845) 485.2739

http://www.millhousebrewing.com/

Ice House on the Hudson  (map it!)

1 Main St.

Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

(845) 232-5783

http://poughkeepsieicehouse.com/

The Artist's Palette  (map it!)

307 Main St.

Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

(845) 483 - 8074

http://www.theartistspalate.biz/

Local Entertainment

SplashDown Beach Water Park  (map it!)

16 Old Route 9 W

Fishkill, NY 12524

(845) 897-9600

https://splashdownbeach.com/#_=_

Walkway Over the Hudson  (map it!)

82 Washington St.

Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

(845) 454-9649

https://walkway.org/#_=_

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