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Zephyr Field

Metairie, LA

Home of the New Orleans Zephyrs

3.1

2.7

Zephyr Field (map it)
6000 Airline Dr
Metairie, LA 70003


New Orleans Zephyrs website

Zephyr Field website

Year Opened: 1997

Capacity: 10,000

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Baseball in the Bayou

The Zephyrs reignited professional level baseball in the New Orleans area in 1993 with a doubleheader sweep over visiting Indianapolis. The wins marked the first hometown professional baseball game in the city since the New Orleans Pelicans in 1977. The construction of Zephyr Field in 1997 has not only returned professional baseball to the city, but also provides a family-friendly atmosphere with many unique minor league amenities including pool-side seating.

Whether it’s the great view from chairback seats, meeting the engaging mascots Boudreaux and Clotile, or interacting with one of the many promotional events hosted at the park, Zephyr Field and Zephyr baseball offer up nine innings of local family fun.

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    4

Zephyr Field comes equipped with a wide variety of concession options. There are numerous different types of stands throughout the main concourse, including various mobile stands as well. The prices for your ballpark classics include $4 for a hot dog, $3.75 for bottled sodas (Pepsi products) and $4 for a large popcorn.

Outside of the staples, you'll find everything from local favorites like a muffaletta and crawfish pies, to Italian sausage sandwiches, bbq, and fried Oreos. The great variety is truly a plus. Though $4 is a bit extreme for a basic hot dog, the price tag comes along with many other options. Personally, I recommend the crawfish pies from the Batter Up stand. The fried Oreos are a unique option. You'll also find alcoholic beverages including The Last Ride Zephyr Bar.

Atmosphere    4

Almost anything you could want in a family-friendly sporting event can be found at Zephyr's Field. Personally, I have several great family memories at the ballpark including many Fourth of July fireworks shows (these games are the hottest tickets on the schedule) and my son meeting Spider-man for the first time (he even autographed his Spider-man hat, something he reminds me every time he wears it). The promotions team certainly won't be accused of sleeping on the job. Every game has a special theme and within each game there is a frenzy of different activities going on between innings. The team mascots Boudreaux D. Nutria and Clotile (his wife) are without a doubt truly unique. What other sports team features Nutria rats as their mascot? You'll see these two constantly roaming the stadium to interact with fans and making on-field appearances.

Outside of the jam-packed special events and promotions schedule, there's not a bad seat in the park. The stadium is complimented with chairback seating and cupholders throughout the seating areas. If you are looking to beat the New Orleans heat and humidity, the park is equipped with 16 luxury suites. There's a pool and two hot-tubs located just beyond the right field wall in an area coined the Gator's Den. This area is usually rented out for parties and special events, and provides a truly unique baseball viewing experience. The Coors Light Party Shack is located adjacent to the pool area down the right field foul line. This is another area which can be rented out for parties and barbecuing. Beyond the left field fence is Metairie Bank Home Run Porch which usually hosts catered events.

The only thing missing from the Zephyr's experience are the fans. Attendance has waned since the club's inaugural season at Zephyr Field in 1997.

Neighborhood    3

If you're driving in from out of town, Zephyr Field's close location to the heart of New Orleans is a major plus. The park is located in a New Orleans suburb, Metairie, which is about 10 miles from the central business district and French Quarter. If you live in the NOLA area, the location is not as advantageous. Anyone who has spent any time in NOLA knows traffic is a nightmare. Getting to and from New Orleans from the park may only be a handful of miles, but could take 30 minutes or more depending on the traffic.

The immediate area around the stadium is fairly sparse. Outside of a couple fast food joints, there is nothing in walking distance that would be recommended. Just a couple of miles north of the ballpark will put you on a lively strip of Veterans Boulevard. This strip comes with two shopping malls (Lakeside and Clearview) and plenty of restaurants, hotels, and shopping opportunities.

You'll have no problem finding quality eats in this area. A few off the radar locations I would recommend is grabbing a burger at Bud's Broiler or Frostop. Neither of these locations look like much on the outside (well, they don't look a whole lot better inside either), but their burgers are truly excellent and come at a price that won't break the bank. If you aren't planning to make the trip to NOLA and the French Quarter, you can get a taste of the famous Café du Monde beignets and café au lait at their Veterans Blvd location.

For lodging, check out the Four Points by Sheraton (6401 Veterans) and TownPlace Suites (5424 Citrus Blvd).

Fans    2

The only thing missing from the Zephyrs stadium experience are butts in the seats. The park has everything you could ask for except outdoor air-conditioning and mosquito repellant...maybe the promotions crew can figure this one out, too. There are plenty of reasons for why this may be. Though I joke about mosquitoes and heat, this is a real drawback to attending an outdoor sporting event on the bayou. With that said, these deterrents certainly don't keep rabid Saints and LSU fans indoors.

The price of attendance doesn't seem unreasonable. There's also reasonably priced concession options as well. With the Saints, Pelicans, and LSU dominating the headlines, there's not a lot of room remaining for other sports teams. Additionally, some of the best college baseball in America can be found locally with the LSU Tigers, Tulane Green Wave, and even the Southeastern Louisiana Lions on the Northshore.

Another explanation may be that there's just too much to do in a smaller populated city like New Orleans with an expansive attractions and nightlife scene.

Then there's also the constant switching of MLB team affiliations. Some of the better crowds could be found when the Zephyrs were connected to the Houston Astros. Though Houston isn't in the backyard of NOLA, the Astros were televised locally on Fox Sports Southwest. This allowed many in New Orleans to follow the Astros as their hometown team considering it's also the closest MLB franchise.

Regardless of the exact reasons why, fan turnout for games outside of the big events like the Fourth of July game is sparse, at best. Those who do regularly attend are loyal fans who've been along since 1993.

Access    3

Transit in the New Orleans/Metairie area can be a nightmare. Located on Airline, Zephyr Field is closely accessible off I-10, the major interstate which passes through the city. Both I-10 and Airline can come to a crawl during peak traffic times (and even non-peak). With only two entrances to the parking lots around the ballpark, getting out of the stadium after a game can be frustrating as well.

The ticket lines leading up to the game look short upon walking up, but the lines seem to move unreasonably slow. This isn't necessarily due to slow service since I've witnessed on many occasions fans seeming clueless about what they want to do once they've reached the ticket window.

Once inside the stadium, the game day attendants are very friendly and super-helpful. If you need directions or have a question, someone will be close by and available to help. The main concourse running between the upper and lower decks is spacious and allows fans to easily get around the ballpark. There are multiple restroom locations and rarely a line (outside of games with overflow crowds). The stairs leading up and down the seating areas are wide enough to allow for multiple people at a time.

Return on Investment    3

For the overall experience provided by Zephyr Field, the return on investment is decent. In addition to the professional baseball experience, the cost of admission also provides plenty of entertainment outside of the on-field action including a wide variety of concession items, engaging and unique mascots, super-hero appearances, and many more events and games.

One of the annoyances at Zephyr Field is being asked to pay for parking. This is by no means an area where parking is in demand. Though the price is only $5 per car, I'd prefer this added to my ticket price rather than cough up $5 cash for a near empty lot on game day.

For families, it would also be great if the Zephyrs allowed toddlers in free (as do many local stadiums). Though this can be justified in that the Zephyrs truly develop a game-day experience that is engaging for fans of all ages, allowing young children in free could help make game day more affordable for the adults accompanying them and will likely be spent in additional concessions and apparel anyway.

Extras    3

The promotions team deserves several points in the extras category alone. Every game has a theme and the promotions crew are busy during each game with countless activities and events.

As you enter the main concourse, the Zephyrs keep fans up-to-date with a list of the starting lineups and current standings in the Pacific Coast League.

Having worked there

... I always thought the ballpark felt WAY too big for the crowd it drew. Had this very structure been built near downtown or the French Quarter, I think it would be rocking and packed more nights on the schedule. But where it is (the thinking was, the abundance of NOLA's suburban populace is in Jefferson County) is so antiseptic and boring and being a Triple-A team these days itself isn't much of a draw, either. That's two strikes.

by roninmobile | Jul 08, 2013 11:42 AM

so sad

I lived in NOLA from 1995 to 2005, so was there when Zephyr Field was built. There were some good crowds, but even by the early 2000's the crowd was sparse on the hot, humid summer nights.

I was back at the end of August 2013 for a visit to NOLA and saw a game. It was so sad. It seems like the franchise has lost all interest in the team. There was less than 1,000 people and half the food stands were closed. I remember discussions about the building of the ballpark and the thinking that suburban location would be a better draw. What a mistake in hindsight. I also think a stadium downtown would have been rockin'

by johntop | Dec 16, 2013 09:38 AM

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Crowd Reviews

Shrine on Airline

Total Score: 2.86

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

Just outside of New Orleans in the suburb of Metairie you will find what's known as the "Shrine on Airline," Zephyr Field. Zephyr Field features 10,000 chair-backed seats with cup-holders, plus seating for nearly 1,000 on The Levee in center field. Most people when they think of New Orleans think of Mardi Gras, parties and good Cajun cooking. Well all of this and more can be found at and around Zephyr Field. The ballpark currently is the home of the New Orleans Zephyrs who are the AAA affiliate of the Florida Marlins. Zephyr Field is a great to place to catch a game, offering wonderful food, affordable prices, and plenty of entertainment for the baseball fan and his/her family.

Great time at Zephyr Field

Total Score: 3.57

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

Whether it's the outfield pool, Boudreaux the Nutria rat, or tasty concessions, you'll enjoy your time at Zephyr Field.

The Shrine on Airline

Total Score: 3.00

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 2
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 3

Just outside of New Orleans in the suburb of Metairie you will find what's known as the "Shrine on Airline," Zephyr Field. Zephyr Field features 10,000 chair-backed seats with cup-holders, plus seating for nearly 1,000 on The Levee in center field. Most people when they think of New Orleans think of Mardi Gras, parties and good Cajun cooking. Well all of this and more can be found at and around Zephyr Field. The ballpark currently is the home of the New Orleans Zephyrs who are the AAA affiliate of the Florida Marlins. Zephyr Field is a great to place to catch a game, offering wonderful food, affordable prices, and plenty of entertainment for the baseball fan and his/her family.

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Local Food & Drink

Bud's Broiler  (map it!)

2008 Clearview Pwky

Metairie, LA 70001

(504) 889-2837

http://www.budsbroiler.com/

Frostop  (map it!)

810 Clearview Pkwy

Metairie, LA 70001

(504) 302-2195

http://frostopclearview.com/

Local Entertainment

Lodging

Four Points by Sheraton   (map it!)

6401 Veterans Blvd

Metairie, LA 70003

(504) 885-5700

http://www.starwoodhotels.com/fourpoints/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=1357

TownPlace Suites   (map it!)

5424 Citrus Blvd

Harahan, LA 70123

(504) 818-2400

http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/msytm-towneplace-suites-new-orleans-metairie/

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