4 suburban ballparks sure to be a hit with the family
Taking the family to Cubs and White Sox games can be great if you're willing to shell out big bucks for pricey parking, top-shelf tickets and costly concessions. Luckily the suburbs offer affordable and fun baseball alternatives.
Here is the 411 on four ballparks in the 'burbs.
Impact Field, 9850 Balmoral Ave, Rosemont, (847) 636-5450, thechicagodogs.com
The Dogs' 2019 season, just the team's second, continues to embrace its Chicago-centric food theme -- even planning an opening day promotion where everyone would get a hot dog costume to set a world record for the largest gathering of wieners. On May 28, the team will celebrate National Hamburger Day with hot dogs. Every Wednesday game will be Wiener Wednesday sponsored by Vienna Beef; all hot dogs will be just $2. The other kind of dog will be welcomed to Impact Field during two Bark at the Ballpark events for four-legged fans. The first, on Wednesday, July 10, will feature the usual $2 hot dogs and will also be a doubleheader. The second, on Sunday, Sept. 1, will offer a pregame autograph session with the team and $3 bottomless popcorn and $3 bottomless fountain drinks. The Chicago Dogs team is a member of the American Association, an independent baseball league.
Mascot Squeeze greets fans of the Chicago Dogs at Impact Field in Rosemont.
- Brian Hill | Staff Photographer, 2018
Schaumburg Boomer Stadium, 1999 Springinsguth Road, Schaumburg, (847) 461-3695, boomersbaseball.com
Since joining the independent Frontier League in 2012, the Schaumburg Boomers have been league champions three times. The team offers a full schedule of special events in addition to having $1 hot dogs every Tuesday and an all-you-can-eat hot dogs, peanuts and popcorn for $10 bargain every Wednesday. The Boomers will host a series of promotions celebrating pop culture icons. June 19 will be "Stranger Things" Night, June 21 will be Harry Potter Night, July 2 will be "Game of Thrones" Night and July 12 will be "Star Wars" Night. Others pay tribute to Legos, Fortnite and "The Office." The team will honor retired longtime Schaumburg mayor Al Larson by giving away bobbleheads of him on June 8. And to celebrate Independence Day, there will be large fireworks displays after the games on July 3 and July 4.
Boomers Stadium will also host a concert by country music star Toby Keith, who is headlining the inaugural Freedom & Dignity Music Festival on Aug. 10. The event will benefit Café Liberty, a Wheaton-based nonprofit that provides free culinary job training and placement for Chicago-area veterans in need.
Schaumburg Boomers Baseball Stadium will be filled with fans again this summer.
- Daily Herald File Photo, 2018
Kane County Cougars
Northwestern Medicine Field, 34W002 Cherry Lane, Geneva, (630) 232-8811, kccougars.com
The Kane County Cougars remain the only minor league team in the Northwest suburbs affiliated with a big-league club. After being affiliated with the Cubs for the 2013 and 2014 seasons, the Cougars are now the A-ball affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks. The ballpark hosts 25 postgame fireworks shows throughout the season, as well as a number of theme nights -- including "The Office" Night on June 27, Christmas in July on July 20 and Princess Day on Aug. 4.
Northwestern Medicine Field will be host to several performances including the Beatles tribute band American English on June 15.
The Ballpark at Rosemont, 27 Jennie Finch Way, Rosemont, (877) 722-6348, chicagobandits.com
The women's professional softball team offers affordable family fun with plenty of ways for kids to get involved beyond watching the game. There's a run-the-bases program once a week, and the team regularly brings kids onto the field for tug-of-war and other games.
There's also the opportunity to purchase special individual experiences such as playing catch on the field prior to the game or taking actual rounds of batting practice with Bandits players for $50. For big fans, the $75 Bandit for a Day program allows kids to get photos with the team before the game, participate in batting practice and high-five Bandits during player introductions.
Since starting in the National Pro Fastpitch league in 2005, the Bandits have captured the league championship four times.
And this year The Ballpark at Rosemont will host the best-of-five championship series from Aug. 15 to Aug. 19. The park will also host the Women's National Softball Team for three exhibition games the weekend of June 14.