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Official Review by Steven Burke, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Silver Cross Field opened in 2002 and is home to the Joliet Slammers. The Slammers name is inspired by the history of prisons in Joliet. The team is a member of the independent Frontier League.
Prior to the Slammers, Silver Cross Field was home to the now defunct Joliet JackHammers from 2002-2010. Silver Cross Field has a capacity of just over 6,000 and is one of the better ballpark experiences the Frontier League has to offer.
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".
The food options at Silver Cross Field have regressed in recent years unfortunately. The standard stadium selection is now the norm. Hot dogs are $4, brats and Polish sausages are $5. Cheeseburgers and pizza are also available and priced at $7 and $6. Sides include onion rings and fried cheese curds for $5.
Beer on the regular concourse consists of the usual selections such as Budweiser, Stella Artois, Miller Lite, Bud Light, Coors Light, Michelob Ultra, Blue Moon, and Leinenkugel Summer Shandy ($6).
Pepsi is the soda of choice in two sizes ($4 or $6). The best beer selection is located at the left field concession stand where a huge rotating variety of craft beers are offered with prices differing depending on your selection.
Silver Cross Field has the typical concourse with a view of the action on the field with suites and the press box located on the upper level. Nineteen rows of green plastic fold down seats make up the lower seating bowl around the infield. While not always easy to access, you do have the capability to complete an entire 360 degree walk around the concourse.
A unique aspect located in right field is the beach, complete with lawn chairs. However it gives more of an impression of a sand box than a day on the shore.
The area beyond the left field wall has a kids play area and picnic tables along the left field wall. This area in left field is where the Slammers have their all inclusive ticket area.
One of the coolest features of Silver Cross Field in the Miracle League field located beyond the center field wall. Miracle League fields are all pavement and constructed so children with disabilities can play the game also.
Joliet has a large downtown area that is very close to Silver Cross Field. Unfortunately in recent years many of the storefronts have become vacant. The Rialto Theatre is the jewel of Joliet and is very close by and worth a look. They have plays, musicals, concerts, and comedians year round.
There are several restaurants and bars near Silver Cross Field. Juliet's and Chicago St. Bar and Grill are two good options for sit down meals. If you want to grab something quickly before entering the ballpark, there are fast food options like McDonalds and Subway close by.
Also within walking distance of the ballpark is Harrah's Casino for those interested in gambling before or after the game.
For those who want to take in a little local history, you will want to stop in to the Joliet Area Historical Museum. Besides providing a good primer to the local history, they also have a display designated toward the genesis of professional baseball in Joliet.
The crowd at Silver Cross Field tends to consist of families just trying to get a night out of the house as they watch the game on the field. The fans tend to react more to the between innings promotions. Crowds tend to be small now that the luster of a new team identity has worn off. When large crowds are present it is usually a result of the promotion on that given night.
There is plenty of street parking available and meters are free after 6pm downtown. While several parking lots are located within a few blocks of the ballpark, they do charge and generally a free street spot can be located if you are willing to take a few laps around the block.
Tickets are $12 for reserved seats which include standard green fold down chairs, or $8 for a spot on the berm. The Slammers also offer various all inclusive options with ticket, food, and beer included.
Ticket prices combined with food, beer, and free parking can make for a fun affordable night at the ballpark.
One extra point for the mascots, Spike and J.L. Bird, both of whom spend ample amount with the fans.
Another extra point for the firehouse across the street past left field. There's a 560 foot marker on the firehouse, showing their commitment to their community and team.
This is one of the better ballparks in the Chicagoland area. It is worth the trip to experience the Slammers and Silver Cross Field.
Member Review by paul
Joliet is currently the fourth largest city in Illinois, located a little under an hour southwest of Chicago. It is a town that is proud of its heritage as an industrial power, which has transitioned to a more diversified economy. From my experience, people seem friendlier than average and seem to enjoy living in the city.
Independent Minor League baseball has been around since 2002, the Jackhammers inaugural season in the Northern League. They made their only playoff appearance under manager Matt Nokes that same season.
Fans can look forward to a comfortable stadium that accentuates the feeling of living in Joliet as much as it does the baseball atmosphere. Everything is well done, and worth a visit, especially if you live in the Chicago area.
Member Review by paul
Donning their bright orange jerseys, the Slammers resemble the inmates of the nearby Joliet Correctional Center. The team changed ownership, league affiliation, and team moniker prior to the 2011 season. Formerly the Joliet Jackhammers of the Northern League, the newly named Slammers joined the Frontier League and even won the Championship series.
The Slammers play their home games at Silver Cross Field. The stadium was opened in 2002, and has a capacity of just over 6,000. It is a great stadium experience compared to other stadiums in the Frontier League, and one of the better minor league experiences available in the greater Chicago area.
Member Review by Goblue1523 on Feb 19, 2011
Food & Beverage
A little expensive for being a minor league stadium. All the basic baseball food is there. In recent years, attendance is down and not all the consessions are open now.
They do a few things in between innings, which is fun to watch and thew crowd gets louder for the side shows and games than the actual game. Overall the atmosphere is not great due to the low attendence.
The Rialto is great and the casino is only a couple blocks away. However; it is not a very safe place to be after the game. There are a lot of police out when the games gets out, so as long as you dont walk around and explore downtown at night, you'll be fine
Parking is free. There are a few parking garages and parking lots that are free and close to the stadium. It is located in downtown Joliet, but traffic in downtown Joliet is not bad at all.
Return on Investment
Tickets are average for a minor leauge team. The talent on the field is not very good. They charge a 1 dollar processing free if you get the tickets the day of the game in person, which is abusrd due to the low attendance memebers.
They have vamped up promotional items and attractions at the games. They've had wrestling matches after the game with former WWE stars. The game I went to they had a person launched from a cannon after the game, which was awesome.
The Joliet Jackhammers are now the Joliet Slammers and play in the Frontier leauge. Hopefully that leauge has better talent.
75 N Chicago St
Joliet, IL 60432
151 N. Joliet Street
Joliet, IL 60432
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