St. Louis Cardinals: Navigating Busch Stadium with Your Kids

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No city loves their baseball team more than STL loves the St. Louis Cardinals! We are re-sharing our best Busch Stadium tips with you in time for the new season!

 

This year, Opening Day in St. Louis is on Thursday, April 4, 2024 when the Cardinals play the Miami Marlins at 3:15 pm. Many families make Opening Day a tradition, taking the day off of school and work to catch the big game. 

Down in Ballpark Village, the day starts as early as 8 a.m. when the Cardinals Nation Restaurant hosts an Opening Day breakfast buffet until 10 a.m. Y98 will be on hand, hosting giveaways, including two tickets to that day’s game.

From there, fans can head to the Together Credit Union Plaza for a pep rally with Team Fredbird from 10 am – 12:30 pm. If you don’t have tickets to the game, you can watch the game on the big screens.

Busch Stadium will open the gates for the 2024 season at noon.

At 2:30, Official Pregame Ceremonies will begin with the Anheuser Busch Clydesdales parade around the warning track. If you want to catch the Clydesdales in their trailers before they head onto the field, head down to Broadway on the south side by the stadium. After the Clydesdales walk the track, enjoy a line up of Cardinals Hall of Famers and the Cardinals Ford Truck Motorcade.

Taking your family to Busch Stadium on Opening Day, or any day throughout the season, can be overwhelming. We have some tips from our STLMom team to make your outing more enjoyable!

Busch Stadium

 

Before You Go

Plan ahead! Sign up for Dynamic Deals weekly emails. They often have $6 weekday tickets, which is great for kids who may only last two innings! Kids 3 and under do not need a ticket if they sit on your laps.

Before heading down to the stadium, double-check the website for a list of items you can / can’t bring into the stadium, and verify the size of bags they will allow. Currently, they will not allow bags larger than 10” x 8” x 10”. They will make exceptions for medical bags and diaper bags. 

PRO TIP: If you have younger kids, bring a diaper bag. If your kids are out of diapers, throw a diaper and some wipes on top. That’s a hot tip from the people at Busch! Since there is leeway for diaper bags, this gives you the freedom to pack the items that you need to keep your kids happy during a game. 

As long as you’re bringing that diaper bag, Fidgets and playdoh (or other small toys) work wonders! Shove them in that diaper bag!

With older kids, plan to get to the ballpark early and catch batting practice!  Batting practice begins before the stadium opens, so you may catch more of the visiting team warming up. But it is fun to watch, and you may walk away with a signature, a photo op, or even a baseball!
PRO TIP: When purchasing tickets and choosing seats, pay attention to which way the sun sets and where your seats are so you don’t roast at the game!

 

Food

While you may bring in food / snacks, hitting up the concession stands is part of the fun at Busch Stadium! 
PRO TIP: Getting food from the concession stands on the upper level can take twice as long as on the lower levels. Sometimes, it’s easier to go down to a lower level than staying at the very top if that’s where your seats are.
Sundays are a great time to visit Busch Stadium. Smithfield hosts Family Sundays, where for most Sunday home games, fans can get $8 tickets.
 
 

Fredbird

We have one of the BEST mascots in the MLB. Fredbird is available for photo ops during each Cardinals home game. You can find him at the Family Pavilion from the first pitch to the start of the 3rd inning. He leaves right at the beginning of the 3rd inning so be sure to catch him during the first two innings to be safe!

 

Family Pavilion

Speaking of the Family Pavilion, it is located on Level 1 between gates 5 and 6. It opens an hour and a half before game time and stays open until the game ends. Be sure to bring socks for your kids to play there!

Here’s what you will find in the Family Pavilion:

  • Speed Pitch
  • Soft-Play Play Area (Socks Required)
  • Virtual Reality
  • Play Structure (Socks Required)
  • Mother’s Nursing Room
  • Family Restrooms

 

Parking

If you are entering the ballpark through Gate 2, 3, or 4, the best place to park is on or near 8th Street. If entering through Gates 1, 5 or 6, the best place is on or near Broadway.

Gameday parking is available for purchase through the Cardinals. Individual game parking can be purchased for the Starr Lot, adjacent to Gate 2 on the south side of Busch Stadium. For details, visit cardinals.com/parking.

 

Babies at the Ballpark

If you are looking for a designated nursing suite, you can find one in the Family Pavilion or one of the family rooms at Section 160 or 348, or First Aid. Busch Stadium welcomes nursing mothers throughout the stadium, as well!

PRO TIP: Wear your babies if you can. Strollers are allowed but often a pain to move around. If you choose to bring a stroller, you can ask an usher at the top of your section if there is a place nearby you can store it. You can also stow an umbrella stroller under your seat, or for larger strollers, head to Guest Relations to store it.

If your kids are little and you have purchased a seat for them, bring a travel booster chair with a tray and strap it to the seat. When plied with toys and snacks along with a cozy spot to sit, your child may give you a solid 2-3 innings if not more, hands free to eat or enjoy game. Yes, it’s another thing to carry and bring into the stadium, but you won’t regret it when you get to actually relax and enjoy the game!

Are you taking your child to their very first Cardinals game?  The STL Cardinals have a certificate that you can print out  to remember the momentous occasion! Check out the link above to find the MY FIRST GAME certificates!

 

Big Kids at the Ballpark

Start a family tradition! Pull the kids from school for Opening Day and go as a family. The kids will get the excitement of their first game of the season, which is the best possible reason in STL for being taken out of school early!

Buy your kids a scorecard and teach them how to track the plays with each at bat, similar to how they do in the dugout! This will keep older kids focused on and engaged in the game. In addition, teach your kids what all the signs and things on the scoreboard mean. It can be exciting for them to watch and understand, especially if they get restless.

Be prepared for the sound of fireworks after a win or homerun if you have kids who are sensitive to loud sounds. Noise-canceling headphones work great!
 
Did you know there is a Build-A-Bear Workshop at Busch Stadium? Take your kids and let them create their own baseball stuffies – it’s a great keepsake for them that they can bring to future games! Build-A-Bear is located in Ford Plaza.
 
three kids at the St. Louis Cardinals game with Build-A-Bear stuffed animals
PRO TIP: Buy your kids cheap fan gear at Old Navy, Kohls, or Target! It is much more affordable than fan gear that you buy at the stadium, and just as cute!
 

Taking Care at the Game

There are two First Aid Stations in Busch Stadium. You can find them on Level 1 behind Section 147, and on Level 4 in Section 351. You can also find vending machines dispensing trial sized first aid items outside of both First Aid locations.

It’s a good idea to bring along sunscreen, however if you do forget to SPF-up before a day game, Siteman Cancer has several sites with sunscreen stations around the stadium. 

PRO TIP: Do not bring in aerosol cans of sunscreen. You will not be allowed to bring them into the stadium.

 

Leaving and Re-Entering the Game

You never know with kids when you may need to leave the game and come back later. Hand stamps are available at gates 1 and 4 if you need to leave and re-enter. 

And, perhaps our biggest kid tip of all … leave the kids at home and have a girls night out at the ball game!!!

What are YOUR pro tips for heading down to Busch Stadium? Share them in the comments!

 

3 COMMENTS

  1. FYI – you may want to clarify that Fredbird is only in the Family Pavilion in the 1st & 2nd innings. They have a lot of people coming there thinking he’s there thru the end of the 3rd inning but he leaves at the beginning of the 3rd inning. We got there at the top of the 3rd inning and missed him. Sadly I have one disappointed 5 year old.

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