Nats Fans on The Road: PNC Park

Joann traveled to Pittsburgh on a Nats Destination trip. (Joann H.)
Joann traveled to Pittsburgh on a Nats Destination trip and she took some terrific photos at PNC Park.

The Washington Nationals traveled to PNC Park last Thursday to play a four game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Many Nationals fans made the five hour road trip to Pittsburgh and they made their presence known with their Curly W apparel and “N-A-T-S, NATS! NATS! NATS!” cheers.  We caught up with two Nationals fans this week—Joann and Daria—who made the trip.

Joann

Joann traveled with her husband to PNC Park as part of an organized Nats Destinations trip.  Nationals fans can pay a flat rate and receive tickets to two games, first class hotel accommodations, a tour of the ballpark and a gift bag.  Participants also receive credentials to attend a pre-game reception with a current Nationals player.  Joann said Clint Robinson attended last weekend’s reception.

The program, she said, was “very well organized.”  “My favorite part was how smoothly everything went…Everything was well planned.” One other exciting part about the trip is that travelers get to spend time with other Nationals fans.  Her favorite part about the way was structured was that she and her husband were able to spend time with other Nationals fans.

The Nats Destinations organizers hooked her and the other travelers up with great seats at the ballpark for the games on Friday and Saturday.  The teams secures tickets with face values between $40 and $70.  Joann had quite the view for the Friday and Saturday game.  She ate some great food (an “amazing” pulled pork and pierogi sandwich) and snapped some impressive photos.

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The next Nats Destination trip is September 11-13 in Miami.

Daria

Daria, a 10-year season ticket holder, arranged her trip to Pittsburgh as part of a larger trip that also brought her to Jacobs Field—home of the Cleveland Indians.

The North Shore neighborhood around the ballpark has many hotels.  If you can’t get a spot at a hotel with a view of the ballpark, there are plenty other hotels, like the Marriot (where Daria stayed), that are just a 15 minute walk from the ballpark.

One of the most defining aspects of PNC Park is the view of the skyline and the Roberto Clemente Bridge which spans the Allegheny River.  Fans walking to the game can cross the bridge, which is closed to traffic on game days, to safely get to and from the ballpark.  All seats, with the exception of the bleacher seats, have excellent views of the skyline and the bridge.

As fans get closer to the ballpark, they will find plenty of history and excitement.  Fans walk by statues of four Pirates Hall of Famers including Bill Mazeroski.  The statue of Mazeroski was unveiled in 2010.  Daria enjoyed the block parties held by the main gates.  The block parties are held on Federal Street (just outside of the left field) on most Fridays and Saturdays and they feature live entertainment along with food and beverage options.

Feeling safe is critical to having a positive fan experience and Daria felt comfortable cheering for the Nationals in her Nationals gear.  She stood when Ian Desmond hit a home run, but was also “mindful of not being an obnoxious fan.”  She chatted with the Pirates fans who sat around her seats and said she, “felt no hostility and had no hassles” at the ballpark.

Nationals fans should definitely add PNC Park to their lists of ballparks to visit.  It comes with a good recommendation from Daria who said she “would definitely go back to PNC Park.”