For a number of years, the Boise Hawks have looked for a new stadium – hoping for several sites in Boise and even at Expo Idaho, with hopes rising and falling.
But with no plan for a new stadium in sight, the Hawks are making do with the aging Memorial Stadium near Garden City.
Hawks Vice President and General Manager Mike Van Hise outlined more than half a dozen upgrades they put into the ballpark in hopes of improving the fan experience for folks coming out to see the Hawks play in the Pioneer League.
“We have been hard at work identifying, creating, and executing awesome fan experience improvements to the ballpark,” wrote on LinkedIn. “We’re extremely proud of what we’ve been able to do and truly look forward to inviting our fans out on opening night to experience these incredible changes.”
Beer Garden, Kids Zone, more
In his LinkedIn post, Van Hise touted a new beer garden near first base, called – appropriately enough – The Garden.
“With additional beer taps and frozen drink offerings, we have created the premier outdoor sports venue social space in the Treasure Valley,” Van Hise said. “Surrounded on two sides with an ivy wall, two 55’ televisions, and illuminated “Boise Hawks” script, The Garden will be the most Instagram-able location in the ballpark.”
A new and expanded Kids Zone area went in along the third baseline, with artificial turf and a bounce house. Van Hise said the new spot is about twice as large as the old kids’ play area.
For fans of the game itself, Memorial Stadium now features a pitch speed tracking system. The speed of pitches will show up on the videoboard.
For those hot July and August games, they’ve added new ten-foot by ten-foot tents with misting to help fans cool off, right on the concourse.
Lastly, the ballpark has a newly upgraded team store for merchandise sales behind home plate.
The stadium will also feature a new Bases Loaded Lager beer from Payette Brewing and a point of sale system that takes credit cards at all locations instead of cash only.
The Hawks open up the home season Saturday, May 28th, hosting the Idaho Falls Chukars.