Here is a review of what you can expect when you visit Citi Field

As I am sure you are already aware the New York Mets moved into a new ballpark in 2009.  Citi Field opened its doors in April and Shea Stadium was officially torn down and a new era in Mets history began.  I have had the privilege of attending a few games so far this season and would like to offer my thoughts on the new stadium.  First off I must admit that I was sad to see Shea Stadium go, I had too many memories there and even though it was a dump it was our dump.  So I was not too enthusiastic about Citi Field, but I have warmed up to it.

At the main entrance of the stadium is the Jackie Robinson Rotunda which pays homage to a true American Hero.  As you walk into the stadium there are pictures of Jackie not only from his playing career but also of his life.  There is also a huge number 42 statue which is a favorite among fans for pictures.    It is definitely worth seeing the first time you go to a game.  If you do want to avoid the long lines and crowds that form in the rotunda you can enter the stadium from entrances located down left and right field as well as center field. Also in the rotunda is a giant Mets team store where you can by just about anything Mets related, including hats, shirts and jerseys.  But don’t worry there are plenty of other places to shop around the stadium.

From the field level seats you are able to walk around the entire stadium. One of the nicest features of the new ballpark is that you can still see the field as you walk around.  Out in center field there are plenty of food options to satisfy everyone’s tastes. The Taste of the City section includes pizza, barbecue, sushi and fish.  All of the concessions in center field are from many of the more popular eating establishment in New York including Shake Shack and Blue Smoke.  The Shake Shack stand has the city skyline from the original scoreboard from Shea Stadium, which is kind of cool.  There is also a beer stand where you can sample a variety of beers from around the world.  The section also includes picnic tables so that you can sit and relax.  Just a world of caution the lines tend to get long, so if you are looking for just a hot dog and a beer I suggest you go to one of the other concession stands located around the ballpark, trust me there are plenty of them.  Overall the food prices are pretty reasonable and are on par with what the prices were at Shea Stadium.

Out in centerfield there is also a kid’s fan fest which includes a batting cage, base running challenge, dunk tank, video game kiosks and more. This section is opens 2 ½ hours before the game and remains open until the 7th inning.  Though why it is open during the game still puzzles me, shouldn’t everyone be watching the game?  But I digress.

Out in centerfield behind the bullpens is the original Home Run Apple from Shea Stadium.  You can pose for pictures in front of it and it is a very popular destination.

As I mentioned before there are plenty of stores located throughout the stadium including one specifically for woman.  Overall there are about eight stores which offer just about every kind of Mets merchandise you can think of.

As far as the seats they are definitely more comfortable than the ones in Shea Stadium and each one has a cup holder which I must admit is a nice feature.  My seats are located in the promenade section, which is fancy speak for nose bleed, but the upper deck is not as high as Shea Stadium or as steep.  The view from the upper deck is fine though because my seats are located down the left field line I do miss any ball that is hit into the corner. But the Mets are quick to put the play on the video screen so you don’t really miss any of the action.  The only other section that I have sat in is what is referred to as the Pepsi Porch which is located in right field.  It is like sitting in the bleachers with an elevated view.  I have not sat in the field level seats but my girlfriend has. She sat behind home plate and based on the picture she was so kind enough to email me while I was at work the view from there is spectacular. 

My biggest complaint about the stadium was the lack of Mets history. When I first visited the stadium I really could not tell the Mets played there.  There were no pictures of former players like in Shea Stadium. But slowly the Mets have taken care of that and they promise that they are working on a Mets museum to be located in centerfield.  Not sure what the timeline would be for that.

I cannot offer a review of the many restaurants in the stadium as I have not been in any of them.  Plus I just don’t understand why you need a restaurant in a stadium. Again shouldn’t everyone be watching the game?

Overall Citi Field is a beautiful ballpark and a nice place to watch the game.  It has good site lines and comfortable seats and I highly recommend visiting it if you get the chance.  Now if we can just get the Mets to start playing better.