The Hartford Yard Goats kicked off their third season at Dunkin’ Donuts Park Thursday.
For two years in a row, Dunkin’ Donuts Park has been voted the best in AA minor league baseball.
The team took on the rival New Hampshire Fisher Cats in the home opener to a sold-out stadium. The Yard Goats won the game 10-5.
NBC Connecticut caught up with one loyal fan at the team store who was looking for some special merchandise.
"I came to the first game last year the end of the season, all the games last summer, I come to as many as I can,” said Elizabeth David of Hartford. "I'm trying to get some stuff for my dog here, they don't have any dog clothes but the baby clothes fit him perfectly," she said.
There is a jam-packed special events schedule this year. On April 29 you’ll be able to bring your puppy to the park. May 16 is Pink in the Park. May 18 is Military Appreciation Night, Pride Night is June 4, and there will be a Star Wars-themed weekend on July 29 and 27.
For the full list of events and to buy tickets, click here.
One of those big changes this year at the ballpark is the stadium has gone peanut-free.
The popular seventh-inning stretch song, "Take Me Out To The Ballgame," got a makeover to say "buy me a hot dog and Yard Goats cap" instead of referencing peanuts and Cracker Jacks.
GETTING TO THE BALLPARK
The Yard Goats parking plan once again includes $5 parking at six select lots and garages, and 100 bike racks right at the ballpark. Fans will have the opportunity to park for $5 within a block of Dunkin’ Donuts Park.
- Market Street (300 Market Street)
- Morgan Street (1000 Main Street)
- MAT Garage (55 Chapel Street South)
- Main Street Stadium Lot (58 Chapel Street North)
- San Juan lot (480 Ann Uccello Street)
- Trumbull Street Stadium Lot (1212 Main Street)
All six lots are accessible from Interstate 84 and Interstate 91. Fans will have the opportunity to pre-pay for parking through the Yard Goats website, and via the LAZgo app.
New this season, LAZ Parking will be providing a free shuttle service on Sundays from the Market Street Lot to the ballpark.
Fans at the home opener Thursday will also be able to enjoy fireworks after the game.
Thursday night's game is the first in a seven-game homestand. After four games against New Hampshire, the team will take on the Richmond Flying Squirrels starting Monday night, when the first 1,000 fans get a winter hat upon arriving to the ballpark.
Last season, the Yard Goats became the first minor league baseball club in Connecticut history to attract over 400,000 fans and led the entire Eastern League in total attendance (408,942), including a club-record 47 sellouts and 28 maximum capacity standing room crowds. The Goats sold out the final 19 home games.
NBC Connecticut and Telemundo Connecticut are the proud media partners of the Hartford Yard Goats.