Baseball fans, pack your bags (and your sunscreen) and hit the road, because spring training is starting in the desert. The Padres are getting into gear February 25 at the Peoria Sports Complex in Arizona — one of ten ballparks in the Cactus League — and there are plenty of game day deals, new amenities, and nearby activities awaiting fans.
The opening game supports Peoria Diamond Club, a non-profit organization whose volunteers help with San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners Spring Training operations. All proceeds from the game benefit local youth charities and organizations.
ExerPlay Kids Days
February 26 and March 5, 12, 19, and 26
Sundays are all about the youngsters at Peoria. Kids 12 and under get the opportunity to stand with a player during the national anthem or announce players coming to bat. After the game, kids can run around the bases and play on inflatable attractions down on the field.
March 3 and 31
Snatch tickets to one of two 6:40 p.m. games during Spring Training and enjoy post-game fireworks.
Bring your furry friends to watch the Padres take on the Rangers on March 20. You can purchase a doggie ticket at the main ticket office and all proceeds support the Arizona Humane Society. It’s lawn seating only, so be sure to bring a blanket.
Fan Appreciation Day
Peoria is celebrating fans with buy-one-get-one-free deals on Outfield Box, Bleacher, and Lawn tickets, as well as $2 hot dogs, popcorn, pretzels, and 16 oz. sodas.
All games except March 8, 10, 15, 18, 21, and 28
Plan your family outing in advance to receive a discounted family package including four hot dogs, four small sodas, four bags of chips, four cookies, and four lawn tickets for $44. Families of 5+ can receive a prorated package.
All military active-duty, retired, and civilian personnel can show their valid military ID to receive $2 off their ticket.
New This Year
Inspired by the two coastal teams that call the complex home, Peoria Sports Complex is debuting its brand new coastal-themed interactive kids zone, called Peoria Cove, for the 2017 Spring Training season. Kids can visit The Ballyard, a miniature baseball diamond; The Shipyard, a 40-foot steel ship with a small splash pad and surrounding play structure; or the Kids’ Café, a kid-friendly concession stand created out of a refurbished old ticket office. Peoria Cove gives young baseball fans an opportunity to play ball themselves or cool down from water shooting out of the ship’s cannons. Entrance to Peoria Cove is free.
The complex’s old left field scoreboard has now been replaced by a 13 HD pixel screen, the first of its kind to land in the Cactus League. The high-resolution board sits at 35 feet tall and 61 feet wide, making instant replays clearer than ever.
All You Can Eat Terrace
Get your mid-game grub on at Peoria’s new All You Can Eat Terrace that features a revolving daily menu with Asian, Italian, Mexican, and classic American food options. Buffet tickets cost $20.
Check out the shaded Craft Courtyard to mix and match up to five flavors of 1 oz. whiskey pours or 12 oz. samples of craft beers from Southern California, the Pacific Northwest, and the Desert Southwest. Mix and match drink tickets cost $20.
Connect with your inner farm girl or boy in Gilbert with $10 goat yoga — a meditation technique born from a yoga instructor and a goat farmer crossing paths. Sarah Williams, a long-time yogi and owner of the Mesa-based Desert Paddleboards, believes that the combination of yoga and pet therapy helps members release endorphins and increase oxytocin, creating a fun and therapeutic experience.
A tribute to the 1987 space shuttle tragedy, the Challenger Space Center in Peoria provides opportunities for education, innovation, and exploration. The center’s strong partnership with the Smithsonian allows guests to see exhibits with one-of-a-kind preserved items that have been accumulated over the years.
Just thirty miles northwest of Peoria sits Mesa, the third largest city in Arizona. Schnepf Farms, a fourth-generation family homestead in Queen Creek, Mesa, recently started offering glamping in their themed vintage trailers. With full hook-ups, vibrant décor, and a view of their 300-acre organic peach farm, glampers won’t need to venture far for a quality time.
The largest lake in the Phoenix and Scottsdale area, Lake Pleasant is a year-round hotspot for water sports and boating excursions. Whether you’re looking to water-ski, kayak, rent a house boat, or simply picnic on the shore, Lake Pleasant has something for everyone.
Five miles down the road from Peoria Sports Complex, attendees can stop by the building that once was Peoria’s first movie theater, later became Peoria’s first fire station, and now stands as the tasting room for Lucidi Distilling Co.
Usery Mountain Regional Park, one of Arizona’s most popular parks, is home to Mesa’s revered Wind Cave Trail. The three-mile round-trip hike offers a bird’s-eye view of surrounding desert terrain and the Phoenix skyline.
Originally Arizona’s first brickyard, this Florence winery is now a culmination of a rural farm and a rustic tasting room. Visit their Wine Tasting Room Wednesday through Saturday for $10 tastings and special events.