First National Bank Field

First National Bank Field is a Minor League Baseball park located in downtown Greensboro, North Carolina. The home of the Greensboro Grasshoppers of the High-A East, it opened on April 3, 2005. The park is on the block bounded by Bellemeade, Edgeworth, Smith, and Eugene Streets.

First National Bank Field
Former namesFirst Horizon Park (2005–2007)
NewBridge Bank Park (2008–2015)
Yadkin Bank Park (2016)
Location408 Bellemeade Street
Greensboro, North Carolina
United States
Coordinates36°4′36″N 79°47′41″W / 36.07667°N 79.79472°W / 36.07667; -79.79472
OwnerGreensboro Baseball LLC
OperatorGreensboro Baseball LLC
Field sizeLeft Field: 315 ft (96 m)
Left Field Jog: 322 ft (98 m)
Left-Center: 365 ft (111 m)
Center Field: 400 ft (122 m)
Right-Center: 362 ft (110 m)
Right Field Jog: 320 ft (98 m)
Right Field: 312 ft (95 m)
Broke groundJanuary 21, 2004
OpenedApril 3, 2005
Construction cost$21.5 million
($32.2 million in 2022 dollars[1])
ArchitectTetra Tech
Moser Mayer Phoenix Associates
General contractorBarton Malow/Samet[2]
Greensboro Grasshoppers (SAL/High-A East) 2005–present

The stadium's seating capacity is 7,499 people, 5,300 of which are chair-back seats. The stadium was built to Double-A standards and has room for future expansion.[3] In 2017, the Grasshoppers had the best average attendance in the South Atlantic League and the highest total attendance in the league.[4]

History edit

The ballpark in 2005

The Grasshoppers moved to First National Bank Field after the 2004 season, leaving their previous home of many decades, World War Memorial Stadium. Lindsay Street, which once cut through the property of the new park, now T's into Eugene, and also provides a direct path to the old stadium. Greensboro's downtown stadium opened its gates to a crowd of 8,540 on April 3, 2005, with a Grasshoppers exhibition game against the Florida Marlins, who were their Major League Baseball affiliate.[5] In the first regular season game, the Grasshoppers defeated the Hickory Crawdads, 3–2, in front of 8,017 fans.[6]

On May 5, 2009, it was announced that the 2010 ACC baseball tournament would be held at the facility, a change from the discussed location of Fenway Park in Boston, due to economic reasons.[7] Florida State won the tournament.[8]

From May 23 to 27, 2012, the park hosted the 2012 ACC baseball tournament, which was won by Georgia Tech.[9][10] During this time, the University of North Carolina took on North Carolina State University in a game that broke the record for attendance at a college baseball game in the state of North Carolina. It was also the largest crowd ever for an ACC baseball game. The attendance, 10,229, was the largest crowd in the history of First National Bank Field.[11]

Features edit

A 30-foot-wide open concrete concourse wraps around the ballpark, giving fans the opportunity to see the game from any vantage point in the stadium. Fans are served at three major concession stands with 36 points of sale.[12] Other amenities include a grandstand outdoor sports bar and a kid-safe play park.[3] There are 16 luxury suites, 26 grandstand boxes, picnic areas, and a grandstand party deck in the left field corner.

Naming rights edit

The ballpark opened in 2005 as First Horizon Park. Memphis, Tennessee-based First Horizon National Corporation was awarded the naming rights on December 7, 2004, for 10 years.[13] On November 7, 2007, it was formally announced that locally based NewBridge Bank had acquired the ballpark's naming rights, after First Horizon National Corporation ended their agreement with the Grasshoppers.[14] The deal runs through the 2017 season.[15] However, Yadkin Bank's acquisition of NewBridge Bank resulted in a name change for the ballpark, effective in the 2016 season.[16] FNB Corporation of Pittsburgh made an offer for Yadkin Bank in 2016.[17] The team and FNB Corporation announced March 6, 2017, that First National Bank will continue the NewBridge sponsorship, and the stadium's new name for the 2017 season would be First National Bank Field.[18]

References edit

  • Baseball America Directory 2005
  1. ^ 1634–1699: McCusker, J. J. (1997). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States: Addenda et Corrigenda (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1700–1799: McCusker, J. J. (1992). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1800–present: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved February 29, 2024.
  2. ^ "First Horizon Park". Starr Electric Company, Inc. Retrieved September 30, 2011.
  3. ^ a b "Stadium History". Minor League Baseball. March 16, 2010. Retrieved February 27, 2012.
  4. ^ "2011 Affiliated Attendance by League". Minor League Baseball. September 12, 2017. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  5. ^ Hass, Bill (April 4, 2005). "A Blowout Beginning". News & Record. Greensboro. p. C1.
  6. ^ Hass, Bill (April 10, 2005). "Hoppers Show Spark in Opener". News & Record. Greensboro. p. C1.
  7. ^ "2010 ACC Baseball Championship Moves to Greensboro, N.C.'s NewBridge Bank Park". Atlantic Coast Conference. May 5, 2009. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
  8. ^ "2010 Baseball Championship". Atlantic Coast Conference. Archived from the original on February 14, 2012. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
  9. ^ "2012 Baseball Championships". Atlantic Coast Conference. Archived from the original on January 19, 2012. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
  10. ^ Justice, David (May 27, 2012). "Eighth-Seeded Ga. Tech Wins ACC Baseball Tournament". The News & Observer. Archived from the original on May 28, 2012. Retrieved May 28, 2012.
  11. ^ Borlik, Joe (May 26, 2012). "Record Crowd of 10,229 Attend UNC/NC State Game in Greensboro". WGHP. Retrieved May 26, 2012.
  12. ^ "NewBridge Bank Park". Greensboro Sports Commission. Retrieved August 3, 2012.
  13. ^ Haas, Bill (December 8, 2004). "Stadium Naming Rights Sold". News & Record. Greensboro. Retrieved April 15, 2012.
  14. ^ Barron, Richard M. (November 9, 2007). "Ball Park's New Player". News & Record. Greensboro. Retrieved August 3, 2012.
  15. ^ Patterson, Donald W. (November 10, 2007). "Bank, Ballpark Like Their Deal". News & Record. Greensboro. Retrieved April 15, 2012.
  16. ^ Covington, Owen (March 4, 2016). "Grasshoppers ballpark to become 'Yadkin Bank Park'". Triad Business Journal. Retrieved March 4, 2016.
  17. ^ Craver, Richard (July 21, 2016). "Yadkin Financial agrees to be sold to Pittsburgh bank for $1.4 billion". Winston-Salem Journal. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  18. ^ "Greensboro Grasshoppers' ballpark gets a new name". News & Record. March 6, 2017. Retrieved March 6, 2017.

External links edit