Florida Roundups / News

Spring Training Guide 2014: Campgrounds, hotels, ticket info, things to do


This article includes:

  • Complete list of Florida’s spring training camps
  • Ticket information and links to each team’s ticket sales
  • Campgrounds near Florida’s spring training camps
  • Things to do near Florida’s spring training camps
  • Hotel listings near Florida’s spring training camps

florida spring trainingOur annual Grapefruit League Spring Training Guide is a great resource for the best campgrounds and things to do outdoors near Florida’s 14 spring-training camps. This guide divides teams into three regions:  Central Florida, Southwest Gulf Coast and Atlantic Coast, with links to other Florida Rambler articles about the best campgrounds and “things to do” near each training camp.

Season tickets go on sale before tickets for single games, and season tickets are on sale now for all clubs. Workouts and batting practice are usually free and open to the public. Check individual team schedules for single-game tickets.

Central (I-4 Corridor)

 

New York Yankees – Tampa

 

Steinbrenner Field in Tampa

Steinbrenner Field: Yankees.
Related story.

Originally called Legends Field, George M. Steinbrenner Field has the same dimensions as Yankee Stadium, down to the inch. It was insisted to be so by the Boss, who, as the story goes, phoned the Bronx from Tampa during its construction and had an employee go to the outfield wall with a tape measure during a driving snowstorm, just to be sure the measurements were correct. Home opener: Feb. 25; Final Home Game: March 29;  Stadium: Steinbrenner Field, 1 Steinbrenner Drive, Tampa, FL. (800) 96-YANKS

Resource links and things to do:

 

Directions: Take I-275 to North Dale Mabry (US Highway 92), exit 41B (old 23). Proceed north approximately 3 miles. George M. Steinbrenner Field will be on your left.

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Philadelphia Phillies – Clearwater

 

Philadelphia Phillies Spring Training

Phillies Spring Training

Built in 2004, Bright House Field is the second-newest ballpark in the Grapefruit League.  Since it’s a replica of Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Phillies fans should feel right at home there.  Home opener: Feb. 26;  Final Home Game: March 27; Stadium: Bright House Field, 601 Old Coachman Road, Clearwater, FL 33765 (727) 467-4457

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: Highway 60 (Courtney Campbell Causeway) West. Cross over Highway 19 and go to the next stoplight (Old Coachman Road). Turn right (North) at Old Coachman Road. Go North through the Drew Street intersection. Stadium will be on right. 601 N. Old Coachman Road.

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Toronto Blue Jays – Dunedin

Florida Auto Exchange Stadium has been the Blue Jays’ Spring Training camp since it was built in 1990. The 5,509-seat ballpark includes air-conditioned skyboxes and three picnic areas. Dunedin has hosted the Blue Jays since their inception in 1977.  It has been ranked as one of the top five places to watch a Spring Training game by Sports Illustrated. Home opener: Feb. 27;  Final Home Game: March 26; Stadium:Florida Auto Exchange Stadium, 373 Douglas Ave., Dunedin, FL 34698

Resource links and things to do:

Direction to stadium from Sarasota (about 57 miles, 92 km): I-275 North to Exit 15 (State Road 694 – Gandy/Park Blvd.). Left (West) on 694 for 1.5 miles to US 19. Right (north) on US 19 for 11 miles to Sunset Point Road. Left (west) on Sunset Pt. Rd. for 3.5 miles to Douglas Ave. Right (north) on Douglas Ave. for one mile – stadium will be on right. Direction to stadium from Orlando(about 109 miles, 175 km): I-4 west to I-275 South. I-275 South to Tampa Airport/State Road 60 Exit. State Road 60 Across Courtney Campbell Causeway to Clearwater. State Road 60 to US 19. Right (north) on US 19 to Sunset Pt. Road (3rd traffic light). Left (west) on Sunset Pt. road for 3.5 miles to Douglas Ave. Right (north) on Douglas Ave. for one mile – stadium will be on right.

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Detroit Tigers – Lakeland

Joker Marchant Stadium, home of the Tigers since it opened in 1966, is the second-oldest ballpark in the Grapefruit League.  No team has called one city its Spring Training home as long as the Tigers, who began going to Lakeland in 1934, and with the exception of a few years in Evansville, Ind., during World War II, have been in Lakeland every year since.  Remodeled and made to look like Comerica Park in Detroit, this is a tradition-rich place to watch baseball. Home opener: Feb. 25;  Final Home Game: March 28;  Stadium: Joker Marchant Stadium, 2301 Lakeland Hills Boulevard, Lakeland, FL 33805 (866-66-TIGER)

Resource links and things to do:

Directions:Take I-4 to the CR-582 exit, EXIT 33, onto CR-582 S/N. Socrum Loop Road. Go under the overpass and veer to the right, turning onto SR-33, also known as Lakeland Hills Blvd. Joker Marchant Stadium is located approximately 2 miles on the left hand side of the street.

Atlanta Braves – Disney World

Champion Stadium has been the Braves’ Spring Training home since 1998. Located within minutes of each of Walt Disney World’s many attractions, the stadium is one of the centerpiece items located within ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex. The 9,500-seat stadium includes four luxury boxes, multiple open-air suites and many of the same amenities found during the regular season at Major League ballparks. Home opener: Feb. 26;  Final Home Game: March 26; Stadium: Champion Stadium, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, 700 S. Victory Way, Lake Buena Vista, FL 34747 (407) 839-3900  Nearest Major Airport: Orlando International

Resource links and things to do:

Directions:Take Interstate 4 to Hwy 192 West and follow signs to Magic Kingdom/Wide World of Sports, right onto Victory Way. Directions at Disney World are clear and plentiful, but there’s no signage that points the direction to the ballpark. Instead, follow the signs to Wide World of Sports.

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Houston Astros – Kissimmee

A short drive from Disney World are the Astros, who have been playing spring games in Kissimmee at Osceola County Stadium, the smallest ballpark in the circuit with a capacity of 5,300, since 1984. Home opener: March 2; Final Home Game: March 30;  Stadium: Osceola County Stadium, 631 Heritage Park Way, Kissimmee, FL 34744 (321) 697-3200  Nearest Major Airport: Orlando International

Resource links and things to do:

  •  Houston Astros Home Schedule and Tickets
  • Best Beaches near Kissimmee: During spring and summer, the Orlando area offers cool relief in dozens of lakes and natural springs that surround the city.  But if you’re looking for surf and sand, you’ll have to travel, and the fastest route to the beach is the Bee Line Expressway (State Road 528), which takes you 70 miles east to Cocoa Beach. The beach at Jetty Park is your smart choice, but if you want some of the spring break action, go to the main beach near the fishing pier. While you’re there, don’t miss the “world’s largest surf shop,” Ron Jon’s, which is open 24/7. … Another choice would be the veer north from the Bee Line onto I-95 towards Titusville and visit Cape Canaveral National Seashore.  Or you can do what many Orlandoans do and take I-4 about 80 miles northeast to Daytona Beach, another popular spring break destination, and New Smyrna Beach.  Interstate 4 will also take you west to Tampa Bay and Clearwater, about 95 miles.
  • Best Camping Near Kissimmee: 7 cool campgrounds near Kissimmee; Lake Kissimmee State Park; Fort Wilderness.
  • Additional campground options from ReserveAmerica
  • Best Cabins Near Kissimmee: Lake Louisa State Park
  • Best Bicycling Near Kissimmee: Seminole Wekiva Trail
  • Hotels in Kissimmee

Directions: Interstate 4 East to US 192, US 192 east to Bill Beck Blvd. Turn left on Bill Beck Blvd., 7/10 mile turn left into parking lot.

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Gulf Coast (I-75 Corridor)

 

Pittsburg Pirates – Bradenton

McKechnie Field, originally built in 1923 and renovated in 1991-93, is named for Hall of Fame manager Bill McKechnie, a Pittsburgh native and former Bradenton resident.  The Bucs have trained and played their spring games at this site since 1969. Although undergoing a complete facelift in 2008, McKechnie Field retains all the charm of its history. Home Opener: Feb. 25;  Final Home Game: March 27;  Stadium: McKechnie Field, 1611 9th Street West, Bradenton, FL 34205 (941) 747-3031 Nearest Major Airport: Tampa International or Sarasota

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: From Interstate 75: Exit I-75 at S.R. 64 West (exit 220 if traveling south, exit 220B if traveling north). Go west on Route 64 to 9th Street West and turn left to the ballpark.

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Baltmore Orioles – Sarasota

The crown jewel of the Grapefruit League, Ed Smith Stadium was in need of an extreme makeover and got one after the spring season of 2010, the Orioles’ first after leaving their previous spring home in Fort Lauderdale.  The revamped ballpark, which features Spanish-style architecture, has refurbished seats from Oriole Park at Camden Yards.  The park also features 100 high-definition televisions and a high-definition LED video board in the outfield. Home Opener: March 1;  Final Home Game: March 27; Stadium: Ed Smith Stadium, 2700 12th Street, Sarasota, FL 34237 (941) 954-4101  Nearest Major Airport: Tampa International or Sarasota

Resource links and things to do:

Directions:  Take I-75 to exit 213 (University Parkway) Head west on University to Tuttle Avenue Turn left onto Tuttle Avenue and head south. Stadium is on the right at the intersection of 12th Street and Tuttle.

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Tampa Bay Rays – Port Charlotte

Among the interesting features of Charlotte Sports Park, built in 1998, is the seating, which affords several options, including 5,000 fixed seats and two berm areas. And in left-center field is a full liquor tiki bar that has a seating capacity for up to 69 fans at a time.  For families with children, the “Kid’s Clubhouse,” located behind the berm seating in the right-field area, features a playground area. Home opener: Feb. 25;  Final Home Game: March 26; Stadium: Charlotte Sports Park, 2300 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte, FL 33948 Nearest Airport: Southwest Florida International (Fort Myers)

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: Take I-75 to Exit 164. Follow US-17 South to US-41 (Tamiami Trail) North. Turn left onto El Jobean Rd., and Charlotte Sports Park will be on the left.

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Boston Red Sox – Fort Myers

 

JetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers

New spring home for the Red Sox: JetBlue Park in Fort Myers

Boston’s new Spring Training home — JetBlue Park at Fenway South — opened last year to wide acclaim.  Inside it resembles Fenway Park, complete with a Green Monster wall in left field where fans can sit, just as they can in Boston. The rest of the outfield is constructed to resemble Fenway as well.  Tradition is everywhere, including a Ted Williams statue just outside the ballpark, and glossy photos inside the main concourse that chronicle the greatest moments in Red Sox history. Home opener: Feb. 27;  Final Home Game:  March 29;  Stadium: JetBlue Park at Fenway South, Daniels Parkway, east of I-75, adjacent to Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers, FL   Nearest Airport: Southwest Florida International

Resource links and things to do:

Directions:Take I-75 to Daniels Parkway (Exit 131) and go east.  The new jetBlue Park at Fensway South is on the north side of Daniels.

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Minnesota Twins – Fort Myers

Built in 1991, Hammond Stadium is located in the Lee County Sports Complex. The exterior of the ballpark, which has a capacity of 7,500, is modeled after Churchill Downs, the famous Louisville racetrack, complete with a fountain and rows of parking that are named after former Twins greats such as Bert Blyleven, Tony Oliva, Harmon Killebrew, Jim Kaat, Kirby Puckett and Kent Hrbek. Home opener: March 1;  Final Home Game:  March 28;  Stadium: Hammond Stadium, 14100 Six Mile Cypress Parkway, Fort Myers, FL 33912  Nearest Airport: Southwest Florida International (Fort Myers)

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: Take I-75 to Exit 131 (Daniels Parkway). Go West two miles to Six Mile Cypress Parkway. Travel south for 1/2 mile. Training complex and stadium are on the right.

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Atlantic Coast (I-95 Corridor)

 

Washington Nationals — Viera

Space Coast Stadium was built in 1993 for newcomers the Florida Marlins and is located in Viera, on I-95 between Melbourne and Cocoa Beach  It was named in honor of NASA’s achievements over the past three plus decades, and this theme is echoed in every corner of the ballpark. Space Coast Stadium can seat up to 8,100 fans, with every seat providing a great view of the field. Home opener:  March 1;  Final Home Game: March 25; Stadium: Space Coast Stadium, 5800 Stadium Parkway, Viera, FL 32940  (This is the former Marlins training complex.) Capacity 8,100. Nearest Major Airport: Orlando International or Melbourne

Resource links and things to do:

  • Washington Nationals Schedule and Ticket Sales
  • Best Beaches Near Viera: The shortest route to a beach is to take Wickham Road east until you hit the Pineda Causeway (State Road 404) and head over the lagoon to Satellite Beach, just south of Patrick Air Force Base.  Another option would be to go north on I-95 to State Road 520, then go east to Cocoa Beach.  The beach at Jetty Park in Cocoa is your smart choice, but if you want some of the spring break action, go to the main beach near the fishing pier. While you’re there, don’t miss the “world’s largest surf shop,” Ron Jon’s, which is open 24/7.
  • Best Camping, Great Beaches and Kayaking Near Viera: Sebastian Inlet
  • Additional campground options from ReserveAmerica
  • Best Hiking and Bicycling Near Viera: St. Sebastian River Preserve
  • Hotels in Melbourne

Directions: Exit I-95 at Exit 191. Go west on Wickham Road to the traffic circle. Turn right (north) on Lake Andrew Drive. Follow Lake Andrew Drive north and west through the Brevard County Government Complex until Stadium Parkway (four way stop). Turn right (north) on Stadium Parkway; Space Coast Stadium is 1/2 mile on left.

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New York Mets – Port St. Lucie

Digital Domain Park has been the home of the Mets since it opened in 1988. It’s a replica of Shea Stadium, the team’s former home in New York. No visit is complete without sampling a Taco-In-A-Helmet, the stadium’s unique take on Mexican fare. A recent addition to the park is a party deck in right field, giving fans an option in addition to the tiki bar down the left-field line. Home opener: Feb. 28;  Final Home Game: March 27; Stadium: Digital Domain Park, 525 NW Peacock Blvd., Port St. Lucie, FL 34986 (877) 538-6282. Capacity 7,800.  Nearest Major Airport: Palm Beach International, West Palm Beach

Resource links and things to do:

Directions:Get off I-95 at Exit 121, St. Lucie West Blvd. Go east and make a left/north on Peacock Blvd. Stadium is one mile ahead on right.

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Miami Marlins – Jupiter

Built in 1998, Roger Dean Stadium is the only shared ballpark in the Grapefruit League.  It features field boxes, loge boxes, bleachers, a grass berm, and luxury skybox seating and seats approximately 6,600. Another 200 fans can spread out on a blanket on the grass berm in right field. The stadium is located in a bustling shopping complex featuring restaurants and sports bars filled with fans throughout Grapefruit League season. Home opener: Feb. 26;  Final Home Game: March 25; Stadium: Roger Dean Stadium, 4751 Main Street, Jupiter, FL 33458 (561) 775-1818 Capacity 6,700, plus 300 on berms. Nearest Major Airport: Palm Beach International, West Palm Beach

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: Take I-95 to Donald Ross Road, Exit 83, and travel east one mile to Central Boulevard. At the light, make a left and follow Central to Frederick Small. Make a left onto Frederick Small and the stadium will be on your left.

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St. Louis Cardinals – Jupiter

This coming spring marks the 16th year that the Cardinals will train at Roger Dean Stadium. Cardinals’ pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to Jupiter on February 12 and conduct their first workout on February 13. The remainder of the Cardinals’ players are scheduled to report February 15 with their first workout on February 16. Home opener: Feb. 28;  Final Home Game: March 27; Stadium: Roger Dean Stadium, 4751 Main Street, Jupiter, FL 33458 (561) 775-1818. Capacity 6,700, plus 300 on berms. Nearest Major Airport: Palm Beach International, West Palm Beach

Resource links and things to do:

Directions: Take I-95 to Donald Ross Road, Exit 83, and travel east one mile to Central Boulevard. At the light, make a left and follow Central to Frederick Small. Make a left onto Frederick Small and the stadium will be on your left.

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