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Official Review by Michael Davis, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
L. Dale Mitchell Park, which opened on February 27, 1982, is home to the University of Oklahoma baseball program. Located in Norman, Oklahoma, the ballpark offers 3,180-seats, has a spacious outfield with dimensions of 335 feet down both lines and 411 feet to straight away center. L. Dale Mitchell Park was named for Dale Mitchell, who holds the Sooners’ career and single-season batting titles. The largest crowd (4,544) to watch a Sooners game was on May, 4 1995 against the arch-rival Texas Longhorns.
The Oklahoma baseball program has 23 conference titles, 36 NCAA Tournament appearances and 10 appearances in the College World Series, including two National Championships (1951 and 1994).
L. Dale Mitchell Park hosted the 2006 and 2009 NCAA Regionals.
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 are two permanent ballpark concession stands in the concourse, down the baselines called "Ballpark Favorites." These stands serve exactly as its namesake suggests. Stadium favorites such as a hot dog and jalapeno sausage will cost you, $4.50 each, while a chili dog is a dollar more. The Frito chili pie costs $5 while peanuts, popcorn, candy and Crackerjacks pricing is between $3 to $4 dollars. The chili cheese nachos and jumbo pretzels are the highest priced items on the food menu, costing $6.00 each. The most unique item offered at the Ballpark Favorites concession stands is the Walking Taco - an opened bag of Doritos Nacho Cheese chips, the chips are then broken with ground beef added, topped with shredded lettuce and cheese with sour cream and a side of picante sauce for $5 dollars. The concessions do offer a Sooner Jr. Kid's Menu with a junior hot dog, popcorn, and soda at the cost of $1.00 for each item.
Besides the Ballpark Favorites stands, there is a temporary food tent called Mackdaddy's located on the concourse on the third base side. Mackdaddy's is home to the Onion burger for $5.50 or $8.50 if you want to "Double D" the burger. Funnel cakes, foot long corn dogs, ice cream, frozen lemonade, and pulled pork tacos are also sold at this stand.
The ballpark serves Coca-Cola products including Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Zero, Diet Coke, Sprite and water. The prices for the soda is $5.00 souvenir cup, $4.00 for a regular, and $3.00 for a small soda or bottled water.
The typical college baseball atmosphere is present at the ballpark with the majority of the games being held on the weekends, affording the opportunity for many families and children to spend some quality time at the ballpark. The press box and suites are located behind home plate and free programs are given out upon entry into the ballpark. There are Boomer Ball posters and schedules in the main concourse behind home plate along with the lineup card for both teams. During the game, there are contests between innings, plenty of music, including the singing of "Oklahoma" in the top of the fifth, and the traditional seventh inning stretch song, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." On selected games, members of the Oklahoma Pom-Squad are present and participate in activities.
The University of Oklahoma is a coeducational public research university located in the city of Norman, Oklahoma, 20 miles south of Oklahoma City. Norman is the 3rd largest city in the state with a population of about 118,000. The OU campus has a student population close to 30,000. The L. Dale Mitchell Park is on the south side of the campus between the Lloyd Noble Center and the Traditions Square Apartments. The neighborhood around the ballpark has a residential feel but the campus has plenty of options of restaurants and lodging.
Where to Eat. On the Northside of campus, by Campus Corner off W. Boyd Street, there are numerous restaurants such as Hideaway Pizza, Louie's Grill & Bar, The Library Bar and Grill, and Pepe Delgados. There are also numerous fast food chains and restaurants within a five mile radius of campus, near the Main Street exit of interstate-35. Included among them is The Shack Seafood and Oyster Bar serving Cajun & Creole, Seafood, and American choices.
Attractions & Entertainment. The Oklahoma City area has so much to offer to visitors that a lot of people are surprised when visiting. However, Norman, Oklahoma should be a stop when visiting the area, as the beautiful University of Oklahoma campus is home to a couple of nice museums; Sam Noble Museum of Natural History and Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art.
Where to Stay. The Hampton Inn-Norman and the Fairfield Inn & Suites are just down Ed Noble Parkway from The Shack.
The Sooner faithful is a strong fan base so no matter what sporting event you are attending the fans are supportive. Fans of all ages show up with their Crimson and Cream, from young girls in their OU cheerleading outfits to the adults decked out in their OU novelties from head to toe. The fans cheer and jeer at the appropriate times during games, participate in the singing of the National Anthem, "Oklahoma", and "Take Me Out to the Ballgame", and have a good time overall.
Access to the ballpark is relatively easy. A short drive from Interstate-35 to the campus, there are numerous ways to reach the campus. Your easiest route to the ballpark will be to exit 108A/B onto Route 9, then take a left onto W. Imhoff Road at the third traffic light. The baseball park will be on your left, with free parking at the Lloyd Noble Center parking lot on the right. There are 2 entry gates behind home plate next to the ticket office. The gates and ticket office opens 1.5 hours prior to the start of the event. ADA seating is available (for more information call the OU ticket office at (800)456-4668).
There are two levels of seating areas. While there is a walkway separating the lower and upper seating tiers, the main concourse is actually above the seating levels,. The lower level seating features chairbacks while the upper level is equipped with benches. The ballpark is built into a grass bowl, so there is a grass berm area beyond the seating where fans can bring blankets or chairs and sit along the top of the berm. The park is easy to navigate as the walkway and seating rows are spacious enough to move around. Due to the ballpark having been built into a grass hill, the only potential negative is having to climb stairs to get to the main concourse.
Oklahoma baseball ticket prices provides a wonderful return on investment for anyone that enjoys a fun college baseball atmosphere which isn't harsh on the wallet. The ticket prices for low close-to-the-field reserve box seating is $12, while adult general admission cost $8. Youth and senior citizens tickets are at a discount for $5 and children under 5 are admitted free of charge.
The banners of past players in the concourse connecting the present with the past is a nice mainstay keeping OU tradition alive while the school continues to usher in new generations of players and fans.
Free parking, along with the ability to watch the game from beyond the outfield fence offers a certain nostalgia of taking in a small-town ball game in a big city bowl.
L. Dale Mitchell Park is a tremendous place to spend an afternoon watching competitive college baseball. The Sooner game day staff does a wonderful job to provide a safe, yet fun-filled day for Boomer Sooner fans at the ballpark. If you are in the Oklahoma City area, a quick stop to watch Boomer Ball is well worth your time.
Member Review by BradleeRoss on Apr 15, 2012
The L. Dale Mitchell Baseball Park has been home to the University of Oklahoma Sooners baseball team since February 27, 1982. Named for Dale Mitchell, who holds the Sooners’ career and single-season batting titles, the park has a capacity of 3,180 and was constructed at an initial cost of $1.27 million. The park has undergone significant renovations over the last decade and is located directly next to the Lloyd Noble Center, the University of Oklahoma’s basketball arena.
With 10 appearances in the College World Series to their credit, including two National Championships (1951 and 1994), this is one of the historic college baseball programs. It is a real pleasure to spend an afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
577 Buchanan Ave
Norman, OK 73069
607 W Boyd St
Norman, OK 73069
786 Asp Ave
Norman, OK 73069
2401 Chautauqua Ave
Norman, OK 73072
309 Norman Center Ct
Norman, OK 73072
301 Norman Center Ct
Norman, OK 73072