Dickey-Stephens Park – Arkansas Travelers

by | Jun 7, 2016 | Baseball, Lloyd Brown, MiLB | 0 comments

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The Travelers Are Now Home

The Arkansas Travelers are one of the longest-running minor league franchise in baseball history, as they have been in existence since 1901. In that period of time, they have played in various levels (Triple-A and Double-A) in a variety of leagues, many of which are no longer in existence. However, they have always called the Little Rock metro area home, and have been the AA affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim since 2001, and members of the Texas League since 1966. Since affiliating with the Angels, the Travelers have won two Texas League Championships (2001, 2008) and five division championships. The Travelers are named for a famous minstrel who plied his trade in the Ozarks for many years.

As you can imagine, in a more than 100-year period, the Travelers have called multiple stadiums home. Since 2007, that home has been Dickey-Stephens Park, named for two Arkansas natives and brothers, Bill and George Dickey, who were quite successful in baseball, and the Stephens family, who donated the land the field now stands on. It is actually located in North Little Rock, Arkansas, directly across the Arkansas River from the capital city of Little Rock.

Food & Beverage 3

The concession stands are located on the very wide concourses, and are frequent enough that you should not experience a long line. Prices for the various foods offered include $5 for a barbecue sandwich, $4.25 for brats, $4 for nachos, $3.25 for hot dogs, $2 for popcorn or peanuts. Drink costs include $2.50 for bottled water and $3.75 for a medium soda (Coca Cola products).

The Draft Beer Station is located at field level along the first baseline, and Brewski Junction is located on the concourse behind third base. Both feature an extensive set of brands, including domestic beers for $5 (16-ounce), Diamond Bear for $4.25, CORE Arkansas for $4.50, Ozark Pale Ale for $4.50, and Frio for $6.25.

Dickey-Stephens also has a party deck behind the right field wall, with balconies overlooking the field. Visitors to this area have the choice to sit in open-air seating or to sit in a covered pavilion with ceiling fans. A minimum of 50 people is needed to reserve this party deck. The ticket cost is variable, depending on group size, and includes a buffet dinner.

Atmosphere 4

Even before you enter the gates of Dickey-Stephens Field, you will notice it is not your typical AA park. First of all, the outside of the stadium is made of red brick, the entry portals have vaulted ceilings, and there is a clock tower in the center. It also features a roof, rather than just a bank of lights. If you think this is suggestive of railroad station architecture, you are right. North Little Rock was a railroad hub, and the designers decided to honor that heritage in this way.

Once inside of the stadium, you will have a sense of deja vu. The setting of Dickey-Stephens Field mimics PNC Field in Pittsburgh. It features a stunning backdrop of a river running just behind the right field wall, with the very impressive skyline of Little Rock in full view. In Pittsburgh, you cross the Roberto Clemente Bridge to access the park; here you cross the Broadway Bridge.

The park has a capacity of 7,300 fans (5,800 fixed seats/1,500 berm spaces). Its dimensions are 332 feet to left, 330 feet to right and 400 feet to dead center. There are 24 luxury suites, some of which are available for a one-night rental if you have a large group. The management has also installed a children’s play area in a shielded area behind the outfield walls for children not interested in the game.

Neighborhood 4

The neighborhood surrounding the Travelers’ ballpark is different, depending on which direction you head before or after the game. Head south, and you will encounter the Arkansas River Trail and the Riverfront Park Greenway. If you head further south across the river, you will be entering the city of Little Rock. Along its side of the Arkansas River, you will be entering the River Market Entertainment District, which includes greenspace, children’s play areas, a farmer’s market, quaint shops and wonderful restaurants. The Clinton Presidential Library is just a few blocks to the east of the River Market, and the Arkansas State Capitol complex is a mile south.

Back on the Dickey-Stephens side of the river, if you head east on Broadway (back towards I-30), you will have a wide variety of restaurants to choose from, including Benihana, the Riverfront Steakhouse and Cregean’s Irish Pub. You will also encounter the closest lodging to the park, the Wyndham Riverfront Hotel, which is only two blocks from the stadium.

Fans 3

With a more than 110 year-old heritage of Minor League Baseball in the area, Traveler fans at the park are often the third generation of their family to be brought up in the Traveler lore and tradition. They will be happy to share their memories from when major league stars like Mike Trout, Francisco Rodriquez and Ervin Santana played here on their way to the big leagues.

As one of the oldest Texas League teams, they have some fierce rivalries, such as their in-state rivals, the Northwest Arkansas Naturals from Springdale. A Naturals/Travelers series is sure to be sold out well in advance. The scoreboard and the organist do a great job in coordinating their efforts to stir the fans to frenzy during an Arkansas rally.

Access 5

Getting to Dickey-Stephens is very easily accomplished by a variety of transportation modes. By car, take the Broadway exit off I-30 and head six blocks west, and the field will be on the left. If on I-630, also exit at Broadway and take Broadway through downtown Little Rock and cross the Broadway Bridge over the Arkansas River into North Little Rock, and the field will be on the right in one block. Persons staying in downtown Little Rock can take a free trolley from the River Market entertainment district over to the ballpark. Runners, bikers and outdoor enthusiasts have the unique opportunity of reaching Dickey-Stephens via the Arkansas River Trail Greenway which runs along the northern banks of the Arkansas River and goes right by the park.

Once inside the park, you will find it very easy to navigate, as the concourses are quite wide. Dickey-Stephens is one of the rare minor league stadiums whose concourse circles the entire stadium, allowing you to get a 360-degree perspective from several vantage points during the game.

Return on Investment  4

A night out at Dickey-Stephens will not break a family’s budget. Ticket prices are $13 for a box seat, $8 for a reserved seat, and $6 for a place on the wide berms in the outfield. The concession prices are quite reasonable, and parking in the stadium lot is $3. You can avoid this charge by taking the free trolley over from Little Rock or walking over the Broadway Bridge. Lodgings on the North Little Rock side of the river tend to be less pricey than those in the capital city.

Extras 4

Like any capital city, Little Rock has a wide variety of activities to choose from before or after a game. At night, the River Market Entertainment District is abuzz with numerous nightclubs and restaurants to sample.

The Travelers have existed since 1901 in some form or fashion. Due to this lengthy history, the Travelers have a free museum on the concourse which features memorabilia, team photos and other interesting facts about the franchise.

The Clinton Presidential Library is a must see no matter what your political affiliation. It covers everything from growing up in a town called Hope, his presidency and even the Monica Lewinsky scandal. More than that, it captures what the world was like during the early and mid-90s. The library itself has stunning architecture and has beautiful gardens to tour.

The Arkansas State Capitol is well worth a visit, due to its proximity to many state museums, which mostly have free admission.

 

Food and Drink Recommendations

Lost Forty Brewing 

501 Byrd St

Little Rock, AR 72202

(501) 319-7275

http://www.lost40brewing.com


Benihana 

2 Riverfront Pl

North Little Rock, AR 72114

(501) 374-8081

http://www.benihana.com/locations/northlittlerock-ar-no/


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Entertainment Recommendations

Clinton Presidential Library  

1200 President Clinton Ave

Little Rock, AR 72201

(501) 370-5050

http://www.clintonlibrary.gov


Arkansas State Capitol

500 Woodlane St

Little Rock, AR 72201

(501) 682-5080

http://www.sos.arkansas.gov/stateCapitolInfo/Pages/stateCapitolTour.aspx


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Lodging Recommendations

 

The Burgundy Hotel

1501 Merrill Dr

Little Rock, AR 72211

(501) 224-8051

http://www.theburgundyhotel.com/


 

Holiday Inn Little Rock West – Chenal Pkwy

10920 Financial Centre Pkwy

Little Rock, AR 72211

(501) 225-1075

Holiday Inn Little Rock West


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Stadium Info

Dickey-Stephens Park
400 W Broadway
North Little Rock, AR 72114

Arkansas Travelers website

Dickey-Stephens Park website

Year Opened: 2007

Capacity: 5,800

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