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  • Writer's pictureMarc Viquez

Shaw Park - Winnipeg Goldeyes

Photos by Marc Viquez, Stadium Journey

Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 4.14

Shaw Park One Portage Avenue East Winnipeg, MB R3B 3N3 Canada

Year Opened: 1999

Capacity: 7,481

Shaw Park - The Standard of Winnipeg

Shaw Park, also known as “The Fishbowl,” opened in 1999 as the home of the Winnipeg Goldeyes. The 7,461 seat capacity stadium has been a major draw in town and the club has been one of the more successful independent teams in North America. The ballpark helped revitalize the downtown attracting 6,048 per game during its first year of operation.

Before the Shaw Park opened, the Goldeyes played in Winnipeg Stadium, a football field that was at one time home of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL. The team gets its name from the original Goldeyes who were a St. Louis Cardinals affiliate in the Northern League from 1954 to 1964, before being resurrected in 1969 as an affiliate for the expansion Kansas City Royals. The franchise captured three titles during its stay in town in 1957, 1959, and 1960.

Professional baseball had been played in town last in 1971 when the Montreal Expos operated the Winnipeg Whips of the International League. The team relocated from Buffalo midway through the 1970 season and were 1,100 miles from its nearest rival in the league; however, the plan was to place the Whips in the American Association, a Triple-A operation at the time, but the move never materialized and the team relocated to Hampton, Virginia for the 1972 season.

The current Goldeyes first played as the Rochester Aces in the Northern League in 1993. The next season the team moved to town and won the championship and the love affair between the city and the team began. There have been two expansions to Shaw Park to add more seats in order to answer the demand for tickets. The team is constantly near the top in attendance numbers in the American Association, mostly at number two behind the St. Paul Saints.

Food & Beverage 5

Shaw Park improved its menu options lately with a variety of options that should satisfy the taste buds of every customer who enters the ballpark. Goldie’s Grill offers the typical ballpark fare of hot dogs, nachos, chicken fingers, and soda pop. The Goldie Dog is split served with grilled onions, real bacon bits, and nacho cheese. Poutine is available at the stand as well. Pepsi products are served at all the stands.

Danny’s Barbecue and Smokehouse serve pulled pork and beef sandwiches, Subway has 6 and 12-inch sandwiches, and Boston Pizza offers $5 slices and the Boston Brute, a french bread sandwich stuffed with salami, pepperoni, smoked ham, tomato sauce and melted mozzarella cheese. Little Bone Wings serves up three sizes of wings covered in up to 14 different rubs and sauces.

A few nice surprises include Mr. Perogie that offers individual sizes of 7 perogies either boiled or deep fried. You can also order them with a few kielbasa links or served poutine-style with gravy and cheese. There is also Asian influence at Mooshiro Japanese Cuisine and Bodegoes Noodles by the Box, the Korean fried chicken is recommended. Finally, Taco Time offers a wide range of tacos, burritos, and Mexi-fries.

The Craft Beer Corner is a 1,400 square-foot deck extending across the tops of sections A and B down the left field line featuring two Labatt Breweries (Mill Street Organic Lager and Goose Island IPA), two from Fort Garry Brewing, and one rotating local craft. Wine and mix drink options are also available if a beer is not your choice of beverage.

Atmosphere 4

Shaw Park features a wide-open concourse that is covered and provides views of the field. It does not wrap around like many current venues but offers views of lush forestry beyond the outfield walls. Probably the best views might be from the outfielders who enjoy the city skyline just above the suites and press boxes above the concourse.

The Goldeyes have made improvements in recent years with the inclusion of the Field Patio in 2016 and Craft Beer Corner Story in 2018. The Field Patio is the perfect space for your group to mix & mingle while enjoying exciting Goldeyes baseball. The two-tiered space features comfortable seating for up to 100 guests with a mixture of standard and pub-style tables & chairs, on-location food and beverages, dedicated service staff and a fantastic field-level view on the first base line.

The Craft Beer Corner Story is a 1,400-square-foot deck extending across the tops of sections A & B down the left field line. The area offers 5 drafts that include products from Mill Street, Goose Island, and Fort Garry Brewing, along with a local Manitoba beer. This marks the first time in a decade that craft beer had been sold at Shaw Park and the response has been a hit with fans and local breweries, where there is a waiting list to get into the ballpark.

The official mascot is Goldie and he entertains the fans throughout the night. The Dugout Store offers a selection of team gear, and the crowd is quite into the game, much more than what you might expect. The Fish have captured 10 division titles and 4 league titles in their first 25 years of existence; the team has only had three losing seasons in its history.

Neighborhood 4

Shaw Park is located in the heart of the city, just down the street from Portage and Main, and a short (less than five minutes) walk from The Forks – one of the city’s largest tourist attractions. The park has also been credited with the revitalization of downtown living in the area, with many new condo developments located on the street along the river creating a vibrant area with low crime making for a safe venture home for the fans.

A few restaurants to visit before or after the game include Earls Kitchen + Bar and Carnaval Brazilian BBQ. Torque and Half Pint Breweries are two noted local establishments that have a following. The Manitoba Museum, Canadian Museum for Equal Rights and Living Prairie Museum make for a great way to spend the day before an evening game.

Fans 4

The fans of Winnipeg have always supported the club well since its first season in 1994, the average size crowds were well above 5,500 as recently as four-years ago, but have slimmed down around 4,500 as of this 2018 season. However, the team has always been either ranked number one or two in the league and fan support at the ballpark is one of the best in baseball.

Access 5

There are five lots within two blocks of the ballpark that charge $7 to park your car. There are some spots downtown at the meter, which expires at 5:30 pm during the week, but is not as easy to find on busy game nights. Winnipeg Transit offers routes to many key locations downtown including Shaw Park for a fee of $2.95.

Return on Investment 4

The price of tickets starts at $11 in advance for grand slam seats (section A-C) in the left field corner. On Deck and Prime Seats cost $17 and $20 in advance between the left to right field line. The Club seating sells for $23 in advance and is between the home and away dugouts. If you happen to purchase your tickets in advance, you will be able to save $3 on each ticket.

Extras 3

The Craft Beer Corner Story is a welcomed addition to the ballpark.

A display of the Goldeyes history on a street-level rotunda between the box office and team store. is worth perusing.

The Path of Dreams is a pathway with personalized messages on bricks that lead to the main gate of the stadium.

Final Thoughts

The Winnipeg Goldeyes are a class act in the world of independent league baseball. The crowd support, enthusiasm, friendly staff, and all around a great time is what makes a visit to Shaw Park a great investment with your ballpark dollar.


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