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Riverfront Stadium

Waterloo, IA

Home of the Waterloo Bucks

2.9

N/A

Riverfront Stadium (map it)
850 Park Road
Waterloo, IA 50703


Waterloo Bucks website

Riverfront Stadium website

Year Opened: 1946

Capacity: 5,000

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Riverfront Stadium-Home of the Waterloo Bucks

The Waterloo Bucks, play in the Northwoods League, a summer baseball league comprised of top college players. The players in this league get to experience wooden bats, bus road trips like the MiLB players, and playing in stadiums with fans in attendance.

Riverfront Stadium, originally built in 1946, underwent expansive renovations after the 2008 floods in Iowa and those of the Cedar River. One person told me the water reached the top of the entryway overhang that year. New clubhouses, offices, concession stands, locker rooms, entrance, and restrooms have been built as a result of the flood and renovation.

2.9

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

There are two concession stands each down the 3rd base and 1st base lines. They are out of view of the field. Both serve the traditional Klement's hot dogs, brats, cheddarwurst ($2.00 - $3.75). Other food items include hamburgers, pulled pork sandwiches, tacos, pizza ($2.50 - $5.00). Snacks and fried food include fish sandwich, french fries, onion rings, cheese curds, peanuts, pretzels, cracker jacks, etc. ($1.50 - $4.50).

They serve a local beer called Angry Cedar, $5 for 22 oz. Regular domestic beer is $2.00 (this might have been a special Thirsty Thursday game I attended).

While the food choices may not 'wow' anyone, the prices certainly will. There is nothing more than $5.00.

Atmosphere    1

There are nice, green trees to view beyond the outfield wall. The stadium seating is all benches except for a few 'special' seating areas (folded chairs) behind home plate (which is behind a net). The benches are metal all along the base line; wood along the left field beyond 3rd base.

They did let me in pre-game to walk around and take photos and figure out where I wanted to sit for the evening game. Nicely done. There is a spot between the net and the chain link fence on both the 1st and 3rd base sides with an opening for fans to watch the game without either of those obstructions being in the way.

There is a wall of photos down the first base outer concourse which displays photos of past teams who played at Riverfront Stadium

The one very glaring downfall to this stadium game day operation is the noise/music played during the game. Some noise is played between each and every pitch (during both home and away players at-bats). Not just the player changes - it is each and EVERY pitch. It is quite intrusive. It made a nice game at the ballpark not so nice. I even tried moving from the 3rd base side to the 1st base side to see if it made a difference. It did not.

Neighborhood    2

Riverfront Stadium is in the Cedar River Park area. It is adjacent to the Fairview Cemetery. I did not notice any restaurants or pubs within walking distance to the stadium.

In downtown Waterloo, there is the Jameson's Public House, an Irish pub worth visiting.

There is also the Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum that is a must see. Even if you don't see a game at Riverfront Stadium, visit this museum when you're in town. The museum is named in honor of the Five Sullivan Brothers, from Waterloo, who died during WWII while serving together on the USS Juneau. When visiting this museum, you are given a 'dog tag' and are a specific Iowan through all the wars and conflicts in US history. By swiping your dog tag you get to hear how your persona might have experienced the war.

Fans    3

The fans did cheer on the Bucks and there were many in attendance but one could not hear them over the music/noise between every pitch and that's a shame.

Access    3

The parking is free. It is easy to get to and find by car. There is no public transportation that I could find and there is minimal traffic after the game. Restrooms serve their purpose.

Return on Investment    5

With $5 for a ticket, $2 for a hot dog, and $5 for a 22 oz local beer one can't go wrong. Just turn off some of the music/noise and it would be an excellent evening at the ballpark.

Extras    3

This was this author's 150th baseball stadium visit. The Bucks asked me if I wanted to throw out the first pitch but I declined. In hindsight, I should have done it. The Bucks allowed fans to run the bases and play catch in the outfield after the game. And, they allowed me to tour and check out the stadium earlier in the day.

Final Thoughts

Waterloo, IA is a fine city and it has an excellent ballpark in Riverfront Stadium. Just turn down/off the music and noise between every pitch and it would be a perfect baseball destination.

What?

I have attended many games at Riverfront Stadium and was excited for this year for it being the Bucks' first in the North Division. I continue to come back time and time again because of the atmosphere. The best part is the music and the organ filler that is played. It gives the games a real old school feel..after all..it is America's Pastime. "Mac the Knife" and "Bunny Hop" are a great couple songs as well as "The Great Escape." If there is no music between pitches, it just gets boring. One game, the Bucks tried a silent night and I happened to be in attendance. They made it so that there was no music between pitches and the fans were asking what was going on and were bored. The music is the best part and their music guy knows what he's doing.

by Gill McDonald | Aug 12, 2012 12:33 PM

It's a fans preference

It’s a fan’s preference (lots of music vs limited amounts); similar to sitting behind the net or not having an obstructed view. I think I would have liked that game you mentioned above. Thanks for commenting and posting that feedback so those fans who do like the music and noise know it is a worthwhile stadium to visit.

by megminard | Aug 13, 2012 08:33 PM

Hmmmmm!

Usually I would agree about the loud and often untimely music...I hate it, too, but I honestly can't remember it being that bad. We found Waterloo a great venue. Improvements made after their exit from affiliated baseball have transformed a drab, lifeless place into an exciting little ballpark. Part of the fun is that it is college ball. Another real plus is they don't play in the early April weather like the affiliated teams in the area. Our travels have opened our eyes to these college leagues. They have become some our favorite destinations in the past couple of years and Waterloo is near the top of our list.

by toprow | May 26, 2013 09:44 AM

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Crowd Reviews

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Local Food & Drink

Jameson's  (map it!)

310 East 4th Street

Waterloo, IA 50703

(319) 233-0701

http://www.jamesonspublichouse.com/

Local Entertainment

Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum  (map it!)

503 South Street

Waterloo, IA 50701

http://www.groutmuseumdistrict.org/sullivan/about.cfm

Grout Museum District  (map it!)

503 South Street

Waterloo, IA 50701

http://www.groutmuseumdistrict.org/

Lodging

Hampton Inn (about 4 miles from park)  (map it!)

2011 Laporte Road

Waterloo, IA 50702

(319) 234-5452

http://hamptoninn3.hilton.com/en/hotels/iowa/hampton-inn-waterloo-ALOIAHX/about/index.html? wt.srch=1

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