The 2023 LovingStPete Guide to Visiting Tropicana Field for Rays Baseball!

By Published On: April 13th, 2023

Ultimate Family Guide to Visiting Tropicana Field for Rays Baseball!

Published on 04/13/23: RAYS UP! The Tampa Bay Rays are off to a stellar 12-0 start! This is my ultimate guide for a day at Tropicana Field for Rays baseball! Geared for families, though applies to anyone who enjoys mixing it up at the ballpark.

Tropicana Field – So Many Activities!

Stingray touch tank, pitching and hitting simulator, kids coloring area, watch your kids run the bases, jumbo Connect Four, giant pong, cornhole, Jenga, UNO, free video games, Skee-ball, shuffleboard table, kids club, tag-a-kid program, post a message on the big screen, mascot races, easy prepaid parking, and more. Just a few aspects I’ll cover in this guide! For the other sports related activities that I’ve suggested thus far, simply select the “sports activities” checkbox on Easy!

Tampa Bay Rays Off to a Great Start

First, how about our Tampa Bay Rays! At 12-0, the Rays earned the second-best start to a season in the modern era. A win tonight will move them into a tie for all-time best start. They’ve also tied for most homeruns to ever start a season. Plus, became the first team to win first eight games by four or more runs since 1884! Incredible.

Onto my Tampa Bay Rays Guide

One great way to beat the heat is inside the air-conditioned comfort of Tropicana Field. The Trop is the only indoor professional baseball facility in Florida. While watching all 9 innings is the obvious first choice, that’s not always possible. In our case, we have a very energetic 7 year old who would rather run around on the field, instead of sitting in a seat for 3 hours. Actually, mom and dad also enjoy and occasional stroll to break up the game a bit.

Information for Families and Kids at Tropicana Field for Rays Baseball

Rays Touch Tank Experience: Just behind the right centerfield wall is a 10,000 gallon tank full of cownose stingrays. These cartilaginous fishes are always game for entertaining the crowd, in exchange for some gentle petting. This activity, in partnership with the Florida Aquarium, also provides a nice photo opp.

Ballpark & Rec: Colt enjoys visiting this area as much as we do! This is the “party center” behind the Budweiser Porch in centerfield. The area has two floors and offers indoor and outdoor activities, such as cornhole, jumbo Connect Four, jumbo Jenga and other tailgating games, plus FREE video games and Skee-Ball. Most of which is on the second floor. While you’re in their upstairs area, make sure to make your way to the back room, just past the Skee-ball. In this area you’ll find couches, tv’s and what Colt claims are “even better video games”…driving games and pinball. All free. Downstairs they offer a shuffleboard as well. On both floors, you’ll find plenty of concessions and signature cocktails.

Raymond’s Tree House: A room with benches and tables for kids to color and hang out together! Crayons and coloring sheets provided for free. Located on first level, basically right below the Rays touch tank, at entrance to section 146/148.

Strike ‘Em Out & Home Run Derby Simulator: Test your pitching and hitting! Located on the first level near the stairs to section 134/136.

Personalized Big Screen Message: Send a special message to others at the Trop, via the Rays Vision big screen! Simply go to for the options. Donations start at $50, toward Rays Baseball Foundation.

Mascot Races: Each game, in the middle of 5th inning, the mascots compete on the field to see who’s the fastest that day. The opposing mascot was tackled on our recent visit. Ha. I’ll try to post a video.

Kids Run the Bases: After every Sunday home game, watch your kids or grandkids run around the bases on the field! Simply follow the instructions on the video board to find out where to line up to enter the field at the end of the game. Cool experience!

Rays’ Mascots: The Rays have two friendly mascots! Raymond is a furry blue seadog wearing a backwards baseball cap. DJ Kitty is a cat who wears chains and spins tunes. When you see them, head over and grab a picture with them!

Rays Rookies Kids Club: For $40, your child can join the Rays Rookies Kids Club! “members receive a free kids meal at every home game, 50 percent off tickets for select home games, a backpack, a snapback hat and Rays Rookies membership patch”. Plus, access to exclusive events and experiences at Tropicana Field, including priority access to Kids Run the Bases. Lastly, once a month, swing by the Rays Rookies kiosk during a home game to collect each month’s pin. Join here: or visit the Rays Rookies Booth located on first level, just inside entrance to Gate 1.

Tag-a-Kid Program: Concerned about being separated from your child in the crowd? The Rays offer a wristband program! Simply visit Gate 3 Guest Services where children are given wristbands with their parents’ section, row and seat number on them.

Strollers: Permitted inside Tropicana Field, but need to be stored beneath a seat during the game. Strollers may not block walkways or aisles. If it cannot fit beneath your seat, a stroller must be checked at Guest Services at Gates 1 or 3, or in the 3rd base food hall under the escalator.

Nursing Room: A private room for nursing or pumping is available behind home plate at the Bayfront Fan Care Clinic. A keypad door lock ensures privacy, and the room is sanitized after each use. Use code 33705 for access.

Reading with the Rays: While this isn’t necessarily an in-game activity, it’s a way to encourage summertime reading. Simply pick up a game card at any public library and track your reading while rounding the bases. More info here:

Tropicana Field and Tampa Bay Rays General Info

$10 Tickets: These are available for every regular season home game and located within the Rays Party Deck (sections 341-355) or select areas of the Lower Level (sections 127-132 starting with Row PP). $10 Tickets are non-transferable and barcodes will not be available until 2 hours prior to first pitch with a maximum of 6 tickets per game, per household.

Ballpark Pass: For $49 a month or $249 for the season, you’ll have standing-room only access to every regular season home game. “Pass holders can reserve up to 3 games at a time and new reservations will re-open as soon as a reserved game ends. Guest passes and seat upgrades will be available at an additional cost. Tickets are non-transferable and barcodes will not be available until 3 hours prior to first pitch.”

Game Day Promotions: The Rays offer giveaways and such for many home games. I’m talking ie free hats, bobbleheads and necklaces upon entry. Here’s the link to follow to see what games offer promotions:

Food policy: Outside food and beverage is not permitted, with the exception of one sealed, personal-sized bottle of water. Exceptions can be made for food specifically needed for medical reasons or childcare.

Merchandise: If you think you’ll want t-shirts, jersey, baseballs or any other Rays/MLB branded items, the main team store is near Gate 1 in centerfield. Next door is the Rays Authentics store with game-used and authenticated items.

Tailgating: Tailgating is permitted at Tropicana Field, and parking lots open three hours before first pitch.

Cash-free: Tropicana field is cash-free. You must use a debit or credit card for all merchandise, food and drink purchases.

Food & Drink: So many options! Hot dogs, hamburgers, Pacific Counter Sushi bowls, Cuban sandwich, pizza, veggie burgers, popcorn, peanuts, BBQ, and more. Of course, you’ll find bars and many locally brewed beers within Tropicana Field.

PapaJohns 50% off!: When the Rays score 6+ runs in any game (win or lose), use code RAYS6 for 50 percent off your pizza order the next day.

50/50 Charity Raffle: Floridians can purchase tickets at (away/home), even if you’re not at the game! Also purchase at the Trop during home games. Good for the first game of each series. Fans who purchase tickets prior to first pitch will receive twice the number of entries. Proceeds benefit the Rays Baseball Foundation, a 501(c)(3).

Tickets: The easiest way is to buy single-game tickets through the MLB Ballpark app, which you should download before arriving at Tropicana Field. As I understand, paper tickets, including print-at-home tickets, are no longer used. You can also purchase tickets at a box office window, near gates 1 and 4. The box office opens 90 minutes before game time and will also help fans access the MLB Ballpark app on their phones. Here’s the seating map at the Trop to assist when you’re reviewing ticket options.

Tropicana Field Parking and Transportation

Parking: Ideally arrive 60-90 minutes before game time to get situated and enjoy some of the items above. Parking can be purchased only with credit or debit card, no cash. If you have an MLB or Rays account (easy to create), you can buy prepaid parking for $15 here:

Uber and Lyft: If you opt for Uber or Lyft, that pickup is located on 4th Avenue South by the Lot 7 entrance/exit.
Transportation: You can take the free and convenient Baseball Shuttle from downtown St. Pete to Tropicana Field. Service on buses, minibuses and trolleys (trolleys are equipped with wheelchair lifts) runs from Second Street South, south of Central Avenue to Tropicana Field about every 10-15 minutes both before and after home games (service ends approximately an hour after the game ends).

Accessibility and Accommodations: Accessible parking is in Lots 1 and 7. The ballpark offers accessible seating throughout and a wheelchair transport service, the Rolling Rays, at Gates 1 and 5. A Sensory Bag is available at all Guest Services locations for those needing sensory support. On the suite level, you’ll find a Sensory Room designed with the University of South Florida’s Center for Autism and Related Disabilities.

Tampa Bay Rays Pre-Game and Post-Game at Ferg’s Sports Bar and Grill

Ferg’s Sports Bar and Grill: This is our favorite spot to visit before and after the games. Ferg’s is huge and also has a dog park. Once you’ve wrapped up your pre-game, there’s a tunnel that leads from Ferg’s to the Trop’s entrance. Ferg’s address is 1320 Central Ave.

Tropicana Field Facts

• Opened in 1990 and named for the citrus juice company founded in 1947 in nearby Bradenton.
• Tropicana’s dome glows orange after every home-team win.
• The Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team played at the Trop from 1993 to 1996 before the Rays made it their home.

Tampa Bay Rays Season Dates and Schedule

The Rays regular season runs from March 30th thru October 1st, so there’s plenty of time to perfect your game day experience! Here’s the full schedule:

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Written by : St Petersburg Realtor, Mike Braswell

Mike Braswell is a Tampa Bay Realtor, serving St Petersburg, Clearwater, all nearby beaches and more. Mike started LovingStPete in October of 2020 after a difficult year took its toll on local businesses. After being cooped up for portions of 2020 (lockdown) Mike and his son decided to get out and explore, helping spread the good word about the local area he loves so much. Often even doing gift card giveaways to support local. LovingStPete is now followed by over 48 thousand people on social media! The majority of posts are informative on fun parks, activities, day trips, great restaurants, and in general provide a comprehensive tour of the area!

Soon after receiving his bachelors in Management Information Systems, Mike developed and then operated a vacation rental advertising business for 10+ years as CEO/Owner. The business was eventually acquired by VRBO. Mike has earned the trust of many large clients over the years. Such as NFL, Wynn Resorts, Blue Cross Blue Shield, VISA, Genuine Parts Company (NAPA Auto Parts), AT&T, and other Fortune 500 companies.

When not spending time with his beautiful wife and energetic son, Mike enjoys boating and is also an avid tennis player. An interesting fact about Mike is that he grew up on an avocado farm with over 15 varieties, some of which you can find in our local Publix/Winn Dixie as his dad still farms the same farm at 87 years old!

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