Regency Athletic Complex at Metro State Denver – Metro State Roadrunners
Photos by Meg Minard, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.29
Regency Athletic Complex at Metro State Denver 1600 West Colfax Ave Denver, CO 80204
Year Opened: 2013
Metro Roadrunners Baseball
Metropolitan State University of Denver, known as Metro or Metro State in the Denver, CO area, achieved university status in 2012. Their athletic teams, known as the Roadrunners, play in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC), NCAA Division II.
The campus in the Auraria neighborhood of Denver is a unique one, with three public education institutions sharing facilities and services on a single campus: the Community College of Denver, the Metropolitan State University of Denver, and the University of Colorado at Denver.
The Roadrunners last RMAC baseball tournament championship was in 2002. The baseball team used to play at Auraria Field across from the Pepsi Center. In 2015, the team moved to the newly constructed Regency Athletic Complex at Metro State University Denver, which houses not only baseball but softball, tennis, and soccer.
Food & Beverage 2
The complex offers basic food and snacks; enough to hold you over for two or so hours.
One concession stand is located in the plaza area beyond the third baseline. Note: It doesn’t open (at least on the day of this review) until just a few minutes before game time. For snacks, it provides pickles, candy, chips, popcorn, muffins, cookies, and peanuts. For something a bit more substantial, hot dogs and nachos are for sale. Bottled Pepsi and water, lemonade, and iced tea are the available beverages. Prices are reasonable; it is a cash only concession.
Signs say no outside food or beverages are allowed in the complex but plenty of folks bring in drinks and snacks; one fan even had a cooler, so that rule is not enforced.
The concession stand is also the merchandise stand with a sorry selection of only a few t-shirts and hats on offer.
If it’s a nice winter/spring day in the Denver area and one is in need of a baseball fix, attending a Roadrunners game is a good place for just that as it’s about the game without any of the silly antics, blaring music, and advertisements found at minor and major league ball games.
Six rows of aluminum bleachers with handrails are behind the home base area. Recommendation: bring a bleacher seat or cushion for better comfort. Another seating area is located after the third base dugout where fans can bring their chairs and watch from behind a chain link fence. This area is more calm and quieter than in the bleachers behind home. There are areas on top of the dugouts that look like they would be a good place to park a chair and watch but those are chained off.
The field itself is all artificial turf: infield, outfield, pitcher’s mound, between the bases, warning track, and the area behind home plate and towards the dugouts. I’m not a fan of this, though I completely understand its need as trying to maintain a grass field in Denver when games begin in February would be a difficult endeavor.
Lights are available for evening games, though most of the games are played in the afternoon.
Music is played between innings and the Roadrunners each have a walkup song played. It is not obtrusive and fans can have conversations with each other without having to yell to be heard.
One thing a bit different is where fans and players face to see the flag during the National Anthem; all players, fans, and even broadcast personnel about face away from the diamond as the flags are behind the press box (which is situated above the bleachers behind home plate). From where I was sitting, I looked directly into the press box; no flag in view. It appears the flags are centrally located for all the fields at Regency Athletic Complex.
The view behind the outfield walls is not much to write home about but looking behind the third base line will show downtown Denver. A beautiful view of the mountains and Sports Authority Fields can be seen beyond the first base / home plate area.
The baseball field is located right next to the MSU campus; just south of downtown Denver; a 1/2 mile from Broncos Stadium at Mile High, a mile from the Pepsi Center, and two miles from Coors Field. All that Denver has to offer is within easy reach especially with the light rail system.
A bountiful amount of restaurants, bars, and grills are available in downtown Denver. Less than a mile away from the ballfield is Original Brooklyn’s, a sports bar/tavern with decent beers and bar food and a nice patio for those warmer winter/spring days. Domo Japanese Restaurant is about a 1/2 mile walking distance. This restaurant also provides a traditional Japanese garden and a museum.
For those into the local craft beer scene, Strange Craft Beer Company is just a 15 minute walk from the athletic field at Metro. The brewery I recommend in downtown Denver is Wyncoop. Freshcraft is an excellent low-key restaurant/bar in downtown on Blake St. Both places have yummy food and excellent beer selections.
For things to see and do near Metro take a stroll along the Ninth Street Historic Park, a tree-lined street of working class Victorian homes and the oldest restored residential block in the Denver community. Be sure to visit the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
And of course, if in town visiting, there’s the plethora of other Denver attractions including the State Capitol Building, the Aquarium, Molly Brown House, Children’s Museum, 16th Street Mall, and more.
The closest hotel is the Springhill Suites in downtown Denver, a little less than a mile walk to the complex and perfectly located for visiting many of the attractions in Denver.
Many fans show up for Roadrunners games, especially if it is one of those warm winter/spring weekends. Since there are several RMAC schools within driving distance, expect to see fans from opposing teams visiting a Roadrunners game.
Some of the fans really get stressed when a call is not made in their team’s favor. It’s a ball game, people; relax and enjoy it.
The fans are very familiar with the players and the team. Comments such as, “Hey, we finally got a bunt down,” can be heard amongst the discussions in the stands.
No distinct student section is found though students do attend the games. A lot of retirees are in the stands soaking up a game being played on the diamond.
Getting to and around the Regency Athletic Complex at Metro State is quite simple.
The stadium is one and a half blocks from the Auraria West Station of the RTD Light Rail. After exiting the train, just head to 5th St (to the right and across the parking lot), cross over train tracks (no bridge) and under the highway and the facility is right there.
For those traveling by car, parking is available at the Beech and Birch parking areas for $3. Parking is free for Sunday games. These lots are just off I-25 exit 210A (Colfax Ave).
The closest airport is Denver International Airport (DIA) which is a 40 min drive. Beginning April 22, 2016, the RTD Light Rail will begin service from the airport to downtown so getting to Metro State may just get a little easier.
Ramps to the seating area are available as well as wheelchair specific seating sections; those seats are at field level.
Return on Investment 3
Tickets are $8 for adults, $5 for alumni, and $4 seniors, students and kids. Metro State students get in for free. Tickets are cash only; no credit cards. Free parking on Sundays adds to the return. If you like the game of baseball without the frills and don’t mind the clink of the bat (vs the crack of the bat) attending a game at Metro is worth the money spent.
Both teams’ rosters can be picked up prior to entry of the venue. The starting lineups are called in a clear voice and not too fast; this is an excellent benefit so for those who keep score.
For train buffs, both freight trains and the light rail pass beyond the stadium’s perimeter.
Being adjacent to a metropolitan city and all the events and entertainment that offers is worth a mention.
Set in an urban neighborhood, it is worth checking out the venue on a warmer Colorado winter/spring day from February to early May and then spending some time visiting downtown Denver and other sports in and near the city. It’s a decent place to get in a game after the long winter.