The welcome aromas of freshly cut grass and hot dogs on the grill; the nostalgic sounds of the crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd; the building excitement of America’s national pastime at the ol' ballpark — this endearing combination can only mean one thing. The annual spring return of the most American of sports is upon us, and with it, baseball fans on the Grand Strand can start gearing up for some good times with the home-team Myrtle Beach Pelicans.
As regular sports-loving visitors know, the Grand Strand is a great place to experience the grand ol' game in a fun, beach-themed atmosphere. Playing their games on TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark — which is conveniently located across from the popular Broadway at the Beach shopping/dining/entertainment complex — the Pelicans play in the Carolina League as the Class A Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs.
The team is a hit among locals and visitors alike who enjoy a fun night at the ballpark, and even among those who don’t typically consider themselves big sports fans. That's because the Pelicans organization puts on a show both on the diamond and in the stands, as well as before and after the game, during the game, and even between innings. Featuring quality baseball and entertainment outside the lines, the Pelicans offer fun and affordable family-friendly entertainment.
After celebrating their 20th anniversary season in 2018, the Pelicans are prepared to take the action to the next level this season with a full slate of 70 home games. Featuring six of the top 30 prospects in the Cubs' farm system and a first-year manager in Steve Lerud, the Pelicans have a young, talented team ready to make run for another Carolina League championship.
But the action on the field is only part of the fun equation at Pelicans Ballpark. The team has been ranked among the top minor-league organizations in the nation for the overall fan experience. Led by official mascots Splash the Pelican, Slider the Home Run Dog and the Rally Sharks, the Pelicans host between-inning games and hijinks to entertain baseball fans and non-fans alike.
Seating 5,500 spectators along with additional standing-room-only space, Pelicans Ballpark has several family-friendly features, including an on-site playground and games for the kids. Of course, everyone is a kid at the ballpark, and that includes those old enough to enjoy the weekly Thirsty Thursday promotion featuring $1 drafts, not to mention $2 Tacos and Tall Boys Tuesdays. Other weekly promotions include Wiener Wednesdays (buy one, get one free hot dogs), Fish Fry Fridays featuring fresh seafood and $2 craft beers, Fireworks Saturdays with post-game pyrotechnics displays, and Family Sundays featuring face-painting, inflatable play stations, and the chance for parents and children to play catch on the field before the ball game.
Those looking to attend a game should keep an eye out for the Pelicans' unique nightly special promotions, such as Bark at the Park (April 24) that invite fans to bring their dogs to the game; Comic Book Hero Night (April 25) with special appearances by your favorite superheroes, and Prom Night (May 31) for fans to flash back to their high school dance days.
One of the highlights of the summer honors the Pelicans' past affiliations with major league clubs. The Atlanta Braves Weekend (June 1-2) pays tribute to the first parent club with an appearance by former star Brian Jordan. The Pelicans also honor current Braves manager Brian Snitker, the Pelicans manager in the inaugural 1999 season, with a jersey giveaway night.
The Pelicans also host Cubs-a-Palooza (July 12-13) to celebrate its current affiliation with the 2016 World Series champions. This year's Cubs-a-Palooza features an appearance from former Cubs manager Lou Piniella and a special giveaway of Cubs' merchandise. The Pelicans also routinely feature future and current Cubs stars doing minor-league rehabilitation stints.
For more information, tickets and a full summer schedule, visit myrtlebeachpelicans.com. And after the final out is in the books at the ballpark, head back to North Beach Plantation to relax in your comfortable oceanfront accommodations and soak in some of the wide-ranging amenities found on the resort property. Book your North Myrtle Beach getaway today — and get ready to find some All-American family fun on the Grand Strand.