Houston is Astros country. From April to September, fans flock to Minute Maid Park for baseball, food, and fun! The park is conveniently located in the heart of downtown next to the convention center. Along with exciting games, fans can also experience some of Houston’s world-class cuisine with restaurants and menu items from local chefs. Don’t miss this exciting Houston tradition while you’re in town!
Before every home game at Minute Maid Park, the Astros and visiting team take batting practice. Bring a glove and catch some free souvenirs as some of baseball’s biggest stars hit homers into the stands starting 2 hours and 25 minutes before game time. This is also the time when players often interact with fans and give autographs before preparing for the game. If you don’t catch a baseball of your own, there are multiple gift shops at the park overflowing with ‘Stros memorabilia.
Once the game is underway, Minute Maid hums with excitement. For restless kids, try visiting the Kids Zone at the northeast corner of the ballpark at the Right Field Entrance near Section 133 for activities, music, and even slushies! Who knows, you might even get to meet Orbit, the Astros’ furry mascot that routinely makes his way around the stadium throughout the game.
Food Inside and Outside the Stadium
Minute Maid Park made national headlines at the beginning of the 2015 with its fried chicken and waffle cone. For the record, it is as good as it looks! The dish is part of a larger park-wide menu that infuses local flavors with a unique twist. The ballpark also features three restaurants by Houston-based celebrity chef Bryan Caswell. Staying at the ballpark to eat is always a good option!
If eating at the stadium isn’t for you, within walking distance of Minute Maid are a handful of excellent dining options offering a great pre-game meetup or post-game celebration. For the more upscale dining experience try the nationally acclaimed Vic & Anthony’s Steakhouse directly across from the ballpark. Jackson Street Barbecue offers mouthwatering BBQ served up Houston-style by three of Houston’s most acclaimed chefs, Greg Gatlin (Gatlin’s BBQ), Bryan Caswell and Bill Floyd of Reef and El Real. Don’t forget about Home Plate Bar & Grill for the favorite neighborhood sports bar. For more options take a short walk to Discovery Green or downtown’s other dining locations.
Cheer on one of the best teams in baseball with thousands of other fans as they chase playoff hopes. Fun fact: the Astros have hit the most home runs of any major league team in the 2015 season. Each time a homerun is hit by the Astros the Minute Maid train blows its horn, shoots fireworks, and chugs its way across the stadium wall towards Union Station.
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Minute Maid Park
Originally called the Colt .45’s, the Astros changed their name when they began playing at the famous Astrodome from 1965-1999. Minute Maid Park became the new home of baseball in Houston. The park was built using pre-existing historical architecture such as the Houston Union Station terminal as a cornerstone.
Free tours are available 3 hours before every home game time (except for Sunday games). Longer, more exclusive tours including the dugout and bullpen are available at 10 am and 12 pm Monday – Saturday for $14.25.
Food at the Park
The ballpark features three restaurants by Houston-based celebrity chef Bryan Caswell. El Tiempo (Section 102) offers the authentic Tex-Mex Houston is famous for, Little Bigs (Section 109) features a variety of homemade hamburgers and pork sliders, and try The Caz (Section 230) for hometown favorite grille and sandwiches. Look out for hometown brewery spotlight like the St. Arnold’s Brewery Bar (Section 104) and Karbach Brewery Bar (Section 404).
Check out the Mazda Club Level for exclusive options like The Butcher and Urban Bistro for chef-inspired carved meats and stone oven-cooked entrees. Minute Maid offers 100% beef Nolan Ryan hamburgers and hotdogs, Papa Johns, chicken tenders, ice cream, and a variety of other traditional ballpark favorites. Fans can also find made-to-order salads and vegetarian options at Green Fork (Section 116).
Promotions and Themed Games
The Astros are always giving back to fans through promotional gifts and themed nights. Show up on a Wednesday for $1 hot dog nights or be treated to a replica jersey or bobble head as you enter the park. Every Friday is Big & Bright Friday Night fireworks at Minute Maid Park. Shortly after the game is over, fans are treated to the best fireworks display in Houston!
The Diamond Club offers some of the most luxurious ways to watch the game. Start your game day experience off with fine dining in a private lounge with a menu’s created by celebrity chef Bryan Caswell and executive chef Tori Bergersen. Enjoy all the gourmet food you can handle and finish up with a fully stocked candy/snack bar. A top-shelf fully stocked bar is available as well. With cushioned game seats right behind home plate, it doesn’t get much better than this!
Minute Maid also features a number of other club level seating options including executive suites. For fans that drive Mazda-made cars, show up early to the game and park free in exclusive parking at Lot C. Then, proceed to show your Mazda key to gain access to the exclusive Mazda Club Level. The area features unique restaurants, private bathrooms, and great views of the field.
Minute Maid Park can be used for a variety of other events besides baseball games. Book engagement or wedding photos, family portraits, or business events for days when the stadium isn’t being used. You can even purchase space during a game to pop the big question!
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