Baseball Lover? Check out the Rays
If you find yourself in the Tampa-St Pete-Clearwater area during baseball season, you might want to slide over and see the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays play their games - actually - in St. Petersburg, at an indoor domed park called Tropicana Field. It's nickname is "the Trop". From Clearwater, it's really a hop, skip and jump over to St. Pete, and rarely are Ray games complete sellouts, so you can safely go over without tickets and expect to get in. Another nice thing about Rays baseball is that there is a LOT of parking nearby to the Trop. Depending on how close you get, the rate can start at $5 and go AS high as $20 to park. My advice is to find a $10 lot - that's usually close enough in to be convenient, and yet far enough from the park to make leaving less of a hassle.
If you are looking TO do a baseball weekend, you'll probably want to stay over in St. Petersburg. Please check out my St. Petersburg, FL "Three Days with the Rays" page for more information.
To buy tickets, go to www.raysbaseball.com.
If you like to have some suds with your baseball, there are all sorts of choices at the Trop. They have more brands than most bars. Sure, they're way overpriced, but.... the best deal is to spend $11 for one of those big chilled 24 ounce canned Coronas... that way, you're getting two "regular beers". And if you are a more serious alcoholic (just kidding folks - have fun, just don't drive), there are lots of other options. ONLY in a place like Tampa do the guys walking in the stadium yell "marrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgaritas, marrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgaritas". Also, you can go to the Captain Morgan club, where they make some killer rum drinks.
Oh, one more thing.... during the summer, there is a "summer concert series". About every three weeks or so, they follow up Saturday night games with a free (to baseball game ticket holders) concert. On our recent visit to the Trop, we enjoyed one of my favorite acts, the Barenaked Ladies. There are a wide variety of choices throughout the summer. Recent visits have included The Beach Boys, the Go-Gos, Daughtry, the Atlanta Rhythm Section, Vanilla Ice (really... egad) and others. Among the upcoming shows will be American Idol favorite Adam Lambert. The concerts are not quite as long as what you'd go to see for a "real concert", maybe a little over an hour and 15 minutes. But the sound isn't bad and the venue is relaxing. Enjoy.
Oh, and if you get caught in one of south Florida's summer rainstorms after the game, duck into nearby Ferg's Sports Bar. They usually have a good deal on domestic bottled beer and its ice cold.