Cleveland Rocks! No seriously… The Cleveland Indians and Progressive Park was our fifth stadium on our MLB family tour, and it gets top marks from our entire family! We visited on an overcast night in June of 2019 after spending a glorious afternoon at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and connecting Rock and Dock Marina. Despite a nearly 3 hour rain delay and a 12:45 am end time, we still had an amazing experience!
TIP 1: Come Early!
As you enter, head over to the Center Field area to visit Heritage Park and learn about the Indians greats and memorable moments in their baseball history. Heritage Park has a unique design, especially the tiered landscaping that makes for some amazing photo ops.
TIP 2: Head to the Corner to Scope out Local Eats
My kids were fans of the Pierre’s ice cream in section 179, which also has a soft serve option that is safe for my son with food allergies. My husband and I drooled over the Melt Bar and Grill which specializes in Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. While you are there, you have to check out all the local craft beer options. You really can’t go wrong.
As an added bonus, there is a great photo op by the escalator stairs. Make sure to take get your iconic Indians picture there before heading up to the Kids Club!
**HOT** TIP 3: Sign up to sit at the Old Bullpen for an inning
Directly in front of the Grilled Cheese Restaurant and the Corner, is section 113 where you can sign up for the Old Bullpen. This is one of the coolest options at the park, in my opinion. For one inning, you can get a birds-eye view from Right Field by sitting in the old bullpen at field level. It was truly special!
TIP 4: Head to the Kid’s Clubhouse and plan to stay for a bit if you have kids!
The Kid’s Clubhouse (Section 311-316 also called the Sportstime Ohio Family Deck) is THE BEST and by far the favorite thing about Progressive Field if you ask my boys. Once you sign the waiver and get a wristband , your kids can play unlimited games which include a miniature wiffle ball baseball field, Virtual Reality Homerun Derby, Circus Catch, Tribe Tracker Race, and Pitching and Batting Practice.
Inside a refreshingly cool Kid’s Clubhouse Playroom, younger children will want to try out a slide, play in a pretend locker room and climb area, color or play the Hot Corner game. Plus, this climate controlled room is equipped with family restrooms and a private Nursing Station.
One of most amazing things about the Kids Clubhouse is that it is staffed with wonderful people who really enjoy children. The Kid Clubhouse staff laughed and played with the kids, and had the patience of saints. Even during the three hour rain delay when the area was inundated with children, the staff was just so exceptional.
What is the cost for this spectacular area? NOTHING! This is a completely free fan experience! Kids can stay as long as they want, and the area closes at the end of the game (even if the game lasts until 12:45 am)
This area is NOT a babysitting service however, and parents are expected to monitor their children for safety and conduct.
If you want to save time, fill out the Kids Zone waiver prior to going to the park by downloading the MLB Ballpark app. The waiver is kept on file for 1 year, so you only have to fill it out once a season.
*HUSBAND TIP*: When buying for tickets for your family look into Cleveland Indians “Keybank Kids Ticket” Program for discount tickets for children under 12.
Tip 5: Stop by the Bleacher Area and see John Adams keep the beat
Rain delay or no, legendary John Adams beat his drums until the last out of the game. And my boys were fascinated. His timing was perfect, and I truly think his beat kept the fans in the stadium with the players during this long, long game.
And while the weather and the rain delay made this game crowd smaller, the fans had an amazing vibe. They cheered without being crass, danced to all the music and got loud to chants until the very end. Even my boys got caught up in the spirit, chanting “Let’s Go Tribe!” and booty-shaking so hard that they were featured on the jumbotron three times.
Even as the night wore on, and I was sure that the kids were going to pass out because they played so hard at the Kids Zone…the crowd and the Indians Tribe kept everyone energized and engaged in Indians Spirit.
And it was one of those special, magical baseball nights that has become the reason that we continue on our MLB tour.
So yeah…Cleveland Rocks.