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Provident Bank Park

Pomona, NY

Home of the Rockland Boulders

3.3

N/A

Provident Bank Park (map it)
1 Provident Bank Park Dr
Pomona, NY 10970


Rockland Boulders website

Provident Bank Park website

Year Opened: 2011

Capacity: 4,500

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Amid controversy, Provident Bank Park finally opened in June of 2011. There had been protests and lawsuits from the Preserve Ramapo group from the day the project started, but ultimately these never slowed the progress of the ballpark construction. Now that it's been built, it seems like the opposition has quieted and the people in the area are beginning to embrace the ballpark. Located about 1 hour north of New York City, Provident Bank Park is located in affluent Rockland County (hence the name of the team).

During its inaugural season, the ballpark still had a somewhat unfinished feel, but this may be because it was rushed to completion. Hopefully by 2012 everything will be finished. Despite this, I was very impressed with what I saw during my visits in the summer of '11. It is easily the most impressive facility among those in the Can-Am League - in fact, it is probably too good for this low level independent league. So far, attendance has only been so-so, but this may be because the Boulders got a late start. It will be interesting to see how the team and ballpark progress in the coming years.

3.3

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    4

The Boulders offer a good array of concessions including pizza, specialty hot dogs and burgers, chicken fingers, wraps, chicken sandwiches, and meatball subs ("Boulders On A Bun"). In addition, there is one stand that sells kosher food items (though it is not open every game). All the specialty burgers and hot dogs must be bought as "baskets", which include French fries. While it is nice of the team to offer the baskets, I would prefer if they also offered more items a la carte. A single ice cream stand (which is a bit hidden and has no signage) offers up waffle cones and sundaes.

Beer is sold out of free standing carts setup along the concourse. Overall, the food is above average, but beware on busy nights "" the lines can be quite long at the concession stands. Prices are a bit higher than what you will find at most parks, but that is probably because of its location near New York City. Burger baskets are $8.50 and hot dog baskets are $7.50. The cheapest individual hot dog is $4.50.

Atmosphere    3

For a brand new ballpark, the atmosphere at Provident Bank Park is surprisingly laid back. The team does not inundate their fans with unnecessary sound effects or music and lets the game be the attraction. This is certainly a refreshing change from so many other minor league parks which do everything they can to distract their fans (see Dutchess Stadium).

The Boulders have a mascot, Boulder Bird, who makes several appearances each night and who seems to interact well with the kids. My only minor complaint is that the Boulders have a dance team. While they only usually come out once per game, this is totally unnecessary at a baseball game. One other aspect that I appreciate is the complete lack of ushers. Most new ballparks have tons of ushers standing around needlessly bothering fans. But not here "" I have yet to see one usher. Hooray for that!

Neighborhood    1

There really is no neighborhood to speak of. Provident Bank Park is located right off the Palisades Parkway in Pomona, but there are no restaurants or bars within walking distance. You'll have to drive a mile or two to find any establishments.

Fans    3

As can be expected at a brand new park, the fans are a mix between those who are there to see baseball and cheer on their home team and those who are just there for a social outing. Though for a first year team, I was surprised that so many fans seemed to be paying attention to the game. With a location in a wealthy, suburban area, it is not surprising to see most of the crowd made up of young professionals and families. So far, the turnout has been lower than what I would have expected (the Boulders are averaging around 2500 per game) for a team in a new ballpark, so hopefully it will pick up once the team becomes more established.

Access    4

Provident Bank Park could not be much easier to get to. It is located right off the Palisades Parkway, about an hour north of New York City. A large, paved parking lot surrounds the ballpark. A fee of $5 is charged per car. The one problem with the location could be the egress "" because there are only two exits (both onto single lane roads), it may be slow getting out on nights with big crowds.

Return on Investment    3

While people who compare Provident Bank Park to MLB parks in New York may think that it's a bargain, veteran minor league travelers will be surprised at some of the high prices. A real seat will set you back between $11 and $16 (a buck more on Fireworks nights). Bleacher seats are available for $8, however, and since there are no ushers, you always have the option of sneaking into a better seat.

Concessions are also on the high side with the cheapest hot dog being $4.50 and the cheapest burger being $8.50. The parking fee of $5 is also a bit steep, especially since most of the teams in the Can-Am League don't even charge. Overall, I certainly would not consider Provident Bank Park cheap, especially compared to other minor league parks.

Extras    5

Provident Bank Park definitely gets bonus points for some unique features. First and foremost is the Bridge Bar in left field. Made of stone, it is meant to resemble the many bridges on the nearby Palisades Parkway. Underneath the bridge, is a bar and large open area where fans can stand and watch the game from field level.

Second, behind the right field fence are two other interesting seating areas. The first is the "Billboard" pavilion seats, which give the fans seated there a bar to rest their food and drinks on. Strangely, these seats are not being sold yet, so apparently anyone can sit there. Also in right field is the "Short Porch" - a group area on field level with its own rows of seating.

One other cool feature is the batting cages, which are located along the first base concourse. Before the game, fans can peer in and watch as the players take their practice cuts. During the game, kids are allowed to take some swings, free of charge, in the cages.

The playground in right field, "Boulderburg", is also a popular attraction, especially for those kids who are bored with the game.

The setting here is also worth noting. It is quite bucolic with trees and mountains providing the backdrop. Views are best from the first base side where fans can witness the setting sun against the mountains. The Boulders owner calls it the "best sunset north of Key West", though that may be a slight exaggeration.


Brian Merzbach is a Guest Reviewer from BallparkReviews.com.

Protests?

What exactly was the group protesting?

by DrewCieszynski | Aug 14, 2011 04:12 PM

Protests

The Preserve Ramapo group was upset about how the ballpark was financed and about the land that was used to build the park. You can find out more at preserveramapo,org

by ballparkreviews | Aug 15, 2011 09:53 PM

Enjoyable park with great potential

I visited Provident Bank Park a few weeks ago to see the Boulders play the Pittsfield Colonials. Overall it was a rather enjoyable experience, and I would have to say that I generally agree with all of the points made in Mr. Merzbach's review. The location of the park is a beautiful and pastoral setting which adds to the relaxing atmosphere of the park. I enjoyed the experience so much that I plan on visiting again before the end of the season.

Despite the fact that I love the park, I do have two criticisms. Mr. Merzbach hit the nail on the head when he pointed out that the cost of tickets, food, and beverages are a bit higher then you'd expect at a minor league team (however not so expensive that I would avoid a visit, but I might come more often if it was cheaper). Which brings me to my next criticism: Provident Bank Park is a beautiful park with impressive facilities, and, while the Boulders are fun to watch, this park deserves a better league. The CanAm League is pretty low on the totem pole in the world of baseball. This park deserves something like a MiLB team that is affiliated with a MLB franchise. I am not saying this because I hate the CanAm League. (On the contrary, I'd like to see the independent league become successful.) I say this because the CanAm League could jeopardize the financial stability of the park. Right now the league has 8 teams (and one is a all-traveling team). However, the future of the Newark Bears and the Pittsfield Colonials is currently in question due to financial concerns. This could shrink the CanAm League to 6 teams, with five that have their own park. Unless the Boulders come out swinging in 2012 and are able to rival a team like Quebec, it's possible the CanAm League could become boring for even the most hard-core baseball fans out there.

Anyway, to cut to the chase, despite my criticisms of Provident Bank Park and the CanAm League, I had a blast going there to see the Boulders play. I didn't feel ripped off, I saw some entertaining baseball moments, and I enjoyed the fantastic layout and facilities of the park. I truly hope it's a financial success, because it is such a beautiful place and a very easy visit for folks living in Bergen and Rockland Counties. I would hate to see the park fail. I used to go see the NJ Cardinals play at Skylands Park, and it really breaks my heart to know that ballpark spent this year vacant and gathering dust. So, in conclusion, if Provident Bank Park is going to be a success the Rockland Boulders need to become one of the best teams in a mediocre league, or the park needs a new venue, like a A+ minor league club. I recently got two decent tickets to a Mets-Nationals game behind home plate on the promenade for $13.50 each on StubHub. Aside from more expensive parking, and slightly more expensive food & drinks, this is not much more expensive then getting the best tickets for a Boulders game. So, if Provident Bank Park wants to attract more fans, they'll need either a winning team, or a team of men who could possibly become future MLB stars.

by Chuck | Aug 26, 2011 10:33 PM

HoJo

If you are in the area, you may want to check out a Rockland Boulders game during the team's last homestand,
Howard Johnson will be joining his son Glen on the field. Very Gordie Howe-esque

by paul | Aug 30, 2011 02:54 PM

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