Newman Outdoor Field - Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks
Photos by Paul Baker and Meg Minard, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.29
Newman Outdoor Field 1515 15th Avenue North Fargo, ND 58102
Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks website
Year Opened: 1996
Originally called “The Nest,” Newman Outdoor Field was constructed in 1996 at $5.5 million. Local company Newman Outdoor Advertising purchased the naming rights to the ballpark in 1998. In addition to serving as the home to the American Association’s Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks, the ballpark is home to the North Dakota State University Bison baseball team.
The Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks began their existence in 1996 as members of the Northern League, winning five championships during their 15 seasons in that circuit. After the 2010 season the Redhawks, along with three other teams, left the Northern League to join the rival American Association. The Redhawks reached the AA championship series in 2021, losing to the Kansas City Monarchs.
Food & Beverage 5
Newman Outdoor Field has a capacity of 4,172, and it feels like there is an individual concession item here for every single fan who shows up.
Portable and permanent stands run the length of the concourse down both sides of the ballpark. There are two permanent stands located on either side of the main entrance to the concourse. In addition to hot dogs (regular sized, chili, or foot long), nachos (regular sized or helmet-sized portion), pulled pork sandwiches, and bratwurst, fans can order pickled eggs or pickles on a stick. Coca-Cola products are featured and advertised as “pop.” You can even get a 20-ounce draft beer for only $6.50 or purchase 2 cans of PBR for $6 before the first pitch. And this is just the beginning.
Other stands lined up along the concourse (and we’re not talking about a row of portable carts, many are permanent structures) sell mini-donuts, giant pretzels (I do mean GIANT), sno cones, caramel apples, Dippin’ Dots, Marco’s Pizza, tacos, grinders, and burritos. When I say that there is something for everyone at Newman Outdoor Field, I mean it literally.
Beer stands scattered throughout the concourse sell national brands, but also feature local craft brews from Hamm’s and Surly Breweries, among others. Coca-Cola products are featured at Newman Outdoor Field. Don’t feel like a beer or pop? Check out the lemonade stand or get a top-shelf adult beverage at the Captain Morgan stand.
A lot is going on at Newman Outdoor Field, much more than you may expect at such a small place. If you come in through the right field entrance you are met immediately by the children’s playground, which is filled with kids burning off energy throughout the game. An important feature of the playground, as this writer was informed by a nearby parent, is that you can sit on the party deck and watch the game and your children at the same time. Coincidence or not, this is huge.
Veteran minor league baseball fans will find a lot that is familiar here in Fargo. There is a great deal of noise to distract the casual fans and to keep the younger fans involved and entertained. Music plays between batters, the typical on-field shenanigans are going on between innings, and there is a mascot who wanders the ballpark posing for photos and interacting with fans. The scoreboard in left-center field is used with game stats and player information throughout the game.
The Redhawks enjoy a close connection with the community as evidenced by a large number of local sponsors and activities including a naturalization ceremony that happens annually at Newman Outdoor Field.
Newman Outdoor Field is located on the campus of North Dakota State University, near the school’s other athletic facilities, including the Fargodome and the Scheels Center. Located right near the airport, fans will find no shortage of places to eat or stay a short distance from the ballpark.
Since most of the options near the university are chains, visiting fans may want to head downtown, where the options are more varied. Downtown Fargo is just a couple of miles from the ballpark. Some excellent breweries, including Drekker Brewing Company and Fargo Brewing Company, are highly recommended by locals. For a true midwestern experience, check out Wurst Bier Hall or The Boiler Room. Visiting fans looking for lodging will find plenty of choices throughout the city.
Visiting sports fans will certainly want to check out the Roger Maris Museum, located in the West Acres Mall. Set up in a hallway of a local shopping mall at Maris’ request, the display cases lining the hall do a nice job of displaying mementos from the home run king’s career. If you have the time, the video of Maris’ life, shown in a small viewing room with actual Yankee Stadium seats, is worth your while.
The Redhawks have consistently ranked in the top five of the American Association attendance rankings, averaging in the neighborhood of 3,000 fans per game. At Newman Outdoor Field you’ll find a crowd that is similar in composition to other minor league baseball crowds, with lots of dedicated diehard fans, lots of casual fans enjoying an inexpensive night out, and a lot of families.
Even though Fargo is the largest city in North Dakota, there’s a real small-town feel going on here. “North Dakota Nice” is a real thing, and you may find yourself spending your night speaking with a bunch of people around you like you’ve known each other all your life.
Newman Outdoor Field is located on the campus of North Dakota State University, just two miles from Interstate 29 and just a few miles from the Red River and the Minnesota state line. Driving is the primary method for getting to the ballpark, and fans will find it easy to do so. Exit 67 deposits travelers on 19th Avenue. Follow this road for a mile and a half and the NDSU athletic facilities will be on your right.
There are ample parking lots both by the main entrance on 15th Avenue and by the right field entrance on Albrecht Boulevard. No matter which entrance you use to get into the ballpark, you will climb a flight of stairs to reach the concourse, which is located at the top of the seating bowl and features views of the field from all spots. With all the concession structures scattered around the concourse, it can become cramped in spots at times, but fans will generally have no issues navigating their way around the ballpark.
The seating bowl stretches from first base to third base. Most of the seating consists of individual green stadium seats. The last two sections on the third base side of the field were added after the initial construction of the ballpark (watch your step, they did not line up the new structure with the old one very well) and featured individually molded bleachers. Bleacher sections are capping off the seating areas in both right and left field. Party areas are located on either side of the seating bowl as well. Netting protects the majority of seats in the infield, and all seats feature excellent views of the field.
As mentioned earlier, there is a lot of activity going on here at a Redhawks game, but getting around is still pretty easy. With a large number of concession stands, lines tend to move quickly and are not an issue. Restrooms are clean and large enough to handle a typical crowd.
Return on Investment 4
The majority of tickets to Redhawks games are sold as reserved seats priced at $12 per seat. Seats in the farthest sections down the third baseline (sections L and M) are sold for $8 per seat, and bleacher sections are sold for $7 per seat. All tickets increase in price by two dollars on game day, with fireworks nights priced at a premium with a two-dollar surcharge.
Parking in the lots surrounding Newman Outdoor Field cost an additional three dollars. Concessions are reasonably priced as well. A night at a Redhawks game is the most affordable entertainment option for local sports fans.
Retired numbers line the façade of the luxury suite level, including Fargo native Roger Maris’ number 8 and Jackie Robinson’s number 42.
The press box is dedicated to the longtime radio voice of the Redhawks, local personality Scott Miller, who lost his battle with cancer in 2016. Adorning the façade of the press box is his signature call “My Oh My.”
The on-field dimensions of Newman Outdoor Field, with a deep left-center field alley and a short right field fence, are designed to mimic the old Yankee Stadium, where local boy Roger Maris broke the long-standing home run record with 61 home runs in 1961.
Some baseball fans fail to consider ballparks like Newman Outdoor Field because they are not a part of the affiliated system. These fans are doing themselves a huge disservice. Ballparks like Newman Outdoor Field and cities like Fargo are the backbone of minor league baseball. Boasting affordable prices, a friendly atmosphere and a comfortable, fun place at which to watch a game, a trip to North Dakota is a worthy Stadium Journey for any baseball fan.
Follow Paul Baker’s stadium journeys on Twitter and Instagram @PuckmanRI.