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by Bob Moore, firstname.lastname@example.org
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), March 27, 2014 - The St. Louis Cardinals and the Cordish Companies promised that Ballpark Village would be a living room for the St. Louis community. On March 27, they delivered a home run, that launched with a dedication ceremony, VIP Gala, a free public concert and fireworks.
For weeks prior to the opening, work crews scrambled to put finishing touches on the $100 million first phase of Ballpark Village. The 120,000 square foot multi-story project, located on 10 acres just north of Busch Stadium, was designed to look like an extension of Busch Stadium. Giant red letter reading 'Cardinals Nation' now welcomes visitors and baseball fans inside the complex where the old Busch Stadium once stood.
For baseball fans who like stats, the construction project, which began in February 2013, features 925 tons of steel, 165,900 bricks, 68 tons of cast stone and 5,108 total cubic yards of concrete. The numbers add up to 250,000 man hours with 250 workers on site at any one time, representing 15 skilled union construction trades.
For civic officials attending opening functions, it was hard to miss the glow of pride for the newest team player in the heart of downtown St. Louis. Cardinals announced their intention to build a new ballpark in 2000. Following years of locker room discussions, missed plays, and a few political dustups along the way, the Cardinals' game day experience is set to begin.
'Out of the Park' features include: a jaw-dropping massive 15.5 foot high, 29 foot wide LED screen at FOX Sports Midwest Live!; a one-of-a kind 100 foot long retractable glass roof; an 8,000 square foot world-class Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum; the Budweiser Brew House offering 239 beer taps; and the world's meanest mechanical bull, named "Ozzie".
"Let's play ball," exclaimed St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay in opening remarks prior to the ribbon cutting. "Ballpark Village will be a regional entertainment destination, giving all of us another reason to come early and stay late in Downtown St. Louis. It links the exciting transformation underway at the Arch grounds to new venues for shopping, dining and fun for the whole family," said the Mayor.
Mayor Slay then presented a Proclamation to Bill DeWitt Jr, Chairman and CEO of the St. Louis Cardinals, declaring today 'Ballpark Village Day' in the City of St. Louis.
"We believe our fans will fall in love with Ballpark Village and all that is has to offer beyond even game days," said Bill DeWitt Jr, Chairman and CEO of the St. Louis Cardinals. "We anticipate that Cardinals Nation and Ballpark Village will be where the best fans in baseball will come to play all year round."
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com) - As a major sports town, St. Louis boasts about the St. Louis Cardinal baseball team, 2011 World Series Champions. They also boast about the new Busch Stadium, which opened for the 2006 season on the former south parking lot of the old Busch Memorial Stadium just north of Interstate 40/64 highway.
Located in the heart of the downtown business district, the facility features classic arched openings similar the nearby Cupples Station warehouses, west of the site. The stadium features a creative use of old and new materials, from red brick and concrete to exposed steel and glass.
The majority of spectators have dramatic views of the Gateway Arch and the downtown St. Louis skyline. The ballpark has expanded bleacher sections, a state-of-the-art video board and entertainment system.
The facility has increased access for fans with disabilities, new escalators and more elevators. Disabled drop-off locations are: Gate 2, at Poplar and Eighth Streets; Gate 4 (Plaza of Champions), at Clark and Eighth Streets; and, Gate 6 on Broadway.
A main-level concourse circles the entire ballpark, providing a 360 degree view of the playing field. Home plate is located in the southwest corner of the site. The stadium features lowered seating and scoreboard heights in center field. A public plaza provides a perfect gathering spot for fans before and after games.
Gate 2 - on the corner of Eighth and Poplar, outside the Cardinal Club
Gate 4 - on Clark Street, east of the Team Store entrance
Gate 6 - on Broadway, outside Ford Plaza
Ashtrays are stationed outside exit/re-entry Gates 2, 4, and 6. The entire Busch Stadium staff has been trained to direct fans wishing to smoke to the designated exit/re-entry gates and smoking areas outside the ballpark.
Baseball fans can enjoy a variety of family activities from browsing in the gift shop to video games and picnics. Visitors can also view St. Louis baseball memorabilia from its beginnings in 1892 to present in the Cardinals Hall of Fame. Some of the great players include Dizzy Dean, Rogers Hornsby, Stan Musial, Ken Boyer, Lou Brock, Bob Gibson and Red Schoendienst.
The sports and entertainment facility is within walking distance of the Scottrade Center and the Gateway Arch.
Directions: Busch Stadium is north of I-64 and just six blocks east of St. Louis Union Station.
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