Photos by Steve Ohnsman and Harrison Huntley, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 4.71
TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark 1251 21st Ave N Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
Year Opened: 1999 Capacity: 6,600
The Ticket to Success in Myrtle Beach
The Myrtle Beach Pelicans have called TicketReturn.com Field their home since 1999 and it is an excellent minor league facility. Located across the street from a large entertainment/dining/shopping complex named Broadway at the Beach, anyone could make an entertaining day of the two properties. The City of Myrtle Beach is heavily oriented to tourists and families, offering many hotels/resorts/golf courses/restaurants, and the Pelicans staff appear to do a great job of attracting local residents and tourists.
An unusually good amount of food and entertainment is available for children to make attending a game a great experience. The stadium offers 4,800 seats while there is room for a total of 6,599 including standing room. The Pelicans are the Advanced Class A team that have been affiliated with the Chicago Cubs since 2015.
Food & Beverage 5
For a Class A ballpark, the Pelicans offer many choices and some unique food items. Start out at the Clark and Addison Grille in the right field corner which provides signature items such as the Chicago Double Play (beef and sausage) for $14.75, the Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Burger for $12.75, Buckner’s Beef Sandwich for $10, Lee Arthur Grass Fed Burger for $9.75, and Santo’s Italian Sausage for $9. There are also homemade potato chips (often included with sandwiches) and fried pork rinds served on the side.
Other food stands in the lower concourse offer Chick-fil-A sandwiches, burgers, hot dogs, nachos, corn dogs, locally made crab cake sandwiches, assorted cheesesteaks, and chicken waffle bites. A Boar’s Head stand offers three wraps and pulled pork.
Hand-dipped or soft-serve ice cream is available in multiple flavors and preparations. The Windy City Wieners assembles the traditional Chicago hot dog with all the fixings.
One item recommended by a number of fans is The Mordecai – three large “Chicken Bog Balls” with a spicy sauce and chips for only $7. Other fun alternatives are Hawk’s Chips and Dip, Sosa’s Turkey Dog and a Grand Slam Veggie Burger.
Pepsi fountain products are served here, just like Wrigley: $3.75 for 24 oz or $5.50 for 32 oz in a souvenir cup. A wide-ranging choice of beers are available: 16 oz premium draft for $7 and 24 oz domestic drafts for $7.50. A “Pelicans Beer Bat” is $15. One stand offers Tito’s Vodka mixed drinks for $8. Bottled water goes for $3.75.
If all these options do not serve you well, you must have gone to a seafood buffet before the game!
ReturnTicket.com Park offers something for everyone: casual and intense baseball fans, families, groups, tourists, local residents; even “foodies.” The natural grass field is well maintained and many trees behind the outfield walls provide an excellent backdrop. Seating alternatives include comfortable traditional plastic seats (originally from Angels Stadium of Anaheim – they are starting to show some wear with chipped paint), metal bleacher seats with backs, and bench seating in left field. Nine luxury suites are on the upper level around the infield.
One unique option is Tito’s Beach Party along the left field line, where the beach comes to the park as fans are encouraged to take off their shoes and dig their toes into the sand; groups of 50-125 can enjoy this beach for $10/person. For some games, fans can buy tickets for this area.
One major improvement is new LED lighting for the entire field. It is programmed to do light shows between innings. Like many minor league parks, activities between innings on the field abound and entertain the fans. An enjoyable mix of music is played throughout the game. Games are played at night here, perhaps to allow fans to enjoy the beach or golf during the day and/or to have cooler temperatures.
The Broadway at the Beach across the street from the field consists of a lake surrounded by a Fishing Village, Boardwalk, and Mediterranean Village with 33 restaurants, entertainment venues, lots of shopping, three hotels and many other things to do. When large crowds are expected for a game, some fans spend time here before the game, leave their car parked in Broadway’s lot, walk across the street to the stadium, and can then avoid backed up traffic after the game.
Since the park is located about 1.5 miles from the Atlantic Ocean with its many beaches, it’s easy to spend a day there and then enjoy a Pelicans game. Myrtle Beach has an amazing number of high quality restaurants at all price levels. So many, in fact, that we recommend using your favorite dining app.
Because of the unique combination of tourism (one estimate shows over 14 million people visiting the area annually) and local population of 32,000 plus residents, the Pelicans draw some devoted local fans, groups, and local/tourist families to the park. The tourist factor is somewhat unique for Myrtle Beach. Fans come to see some promising young ballplayers and to enjoy the great food and entertainment. In 2018, the Pelicans averaged 3,327 fans per game, good for fifth in the Carolina League.
Team mascot Splash is a lively, entertaining character who interacts with the fans throughout the stadium. Slider the Bat Dog is featured in a story about Bat Dogs around the Minor Leagues. The Pelicans Pro Shop is behind first base and accessible from the concourse as well as the parking lot; it offers a wide range of items for the fans.
One quibble: all fans are given a small program at the gate that contains limited information and other parks offer a lot more.
Even though the city attracts so many tourists, getting to TicketReturn.com Field is convenient as US-17 and US-501 intersect nearby. The parking entrance is off Grissom Parkway; paved lots are behind the stadium and the parking is free (a word Stadium Journey really likes). Physically challenged fans will enjoy seating near section 103.
The concourse is reasonably wide at the seats. The concession stands are below the seats, so fans cannot see the field while grabbing a bite or drink; same is true for the bathrooms.
Return on Investment 5
Lower level seats go for $13 and upper level are $11, while left field bleacher seats cost $9. The team offers combination tickets to the game plus popular local attractions as well as many specials each day of the week. Considering the quality of the food, specials, and free parking, along with typical seat prices, this is a great value.
One point for the new LED lighting and another for the innovative beach area. Another point for the Clark and Addison Grille and its friendly, customer-focused staff. Slider the Bat Dog is great fun to watch as he retrieves the bats for all players – another point. A final point for the large, well-stocked Pelicans Pro Shop.
Great food; excellent choice of craft beers; free parking; nearby Broadway at the Beach; Splash and Slider; friendly welcoming staff; and Myrtle Beach combine to make TicketReturn.com Field an easy choice for your visit. It is one of the best in the minors.