Gasparilla Bowl: FIU Golden Panthers vs. Temple Owls
Tropicana Field - Saint Petersburg, FL
Tropicana Field holds its ground, immovable, as the only pure-domed field left in Major League Baseball: everyone else has caved to the retractable roof.
Construction on Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida broke ground in November of 1986 and opened to the public in March of 1990. It is the home of Major League Baseball's Tampa Bay Rays, and it has been their home since their first season, in 1998, when they were the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Since it existed for eight years before the Rays/Devil Rays were in existence, it obviously has been used in a number of ways to entertain visitors. Get your Rays tickets and watch live baseball at Tropicana Field.
It also hosted the NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four games in 1999, when the Connecticut Huskies beat the Duke Blue Devils in the championship game.
The most unique part of Tropicana Field is its slanted roof. It was designed this way to better protect itself from thunderstorms and hurricanes, in addition to also helping reduce the cooling costs of the interior. The main entrance also has the largest outdoor tile mosaic in the state of Florida, with more than 1,800,000 one inch square tiles lining the entrance. It seats 40,473.
Probably the biggest attraction that Tropicana Field has to offer is The Rays Touch Tank, out in right center field. The tank is over 10,000 gallons and is 35 feet long and is filled with Cownose Rays. Admission to The Rays Touch Tank is free for all fans at home games, just with a limit of 50 people at a time. Fans visiting the touch tank get to see, feed, and pet the rays.
The Ted Williams Museum and Hitters Hall of Fame has been at Tropicana Field since 2006. The original museum and hitters hall of fame was in Hernando, Florida, close to where the legendary Ted Williams lived later in life. The original location fell on hard times financially, and the grand idea was made to move it to Tropicana Field, since it was a field typically filled with baseball fans already.
Getting There and Getting In
Parking & Directions
Directions and parking for Tropicana Field are readily available via the Tampa Bay Rays official website, or by calling the stadium and asking for updates on construction and potential detours. Also be sure to check the A-to-Z Ballpark Guide for accommodations and information about to bring and not bring to the ballpark.