Zephyr Field

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Zephyr Field
The Shrine on Airline
Zephyr Field
Location 6000 Airline Drive
Metairie, LA 70003
Coordinates 29°58′31.59″N 90°11′59.07″W / 29.9754417°N 90.1997417°W / 29.9754417; -90.1997417Coordinates: 29°58′31.59″N 90°11′59.07″W / 29.9754417°N 90.1997417°W / 29.9754417; -90.1997417
Broke ground November 30, 1995[1]
Opened April 11, 1997
Owner State of Louisiana
Operator New Orleans Zephyrs Baseball Club, LLC.
Surface Grass
Construction cost $26 million
($38.2 million in 2014 dollars[2])
Architect HOK Sport
Perez Apc
Project manager The Tobler Company[3]
Structural engineer Kulkarni Consultants[4]
General contractor Joseph Caldarera & Company[5]
Capacity 10,000
Field size Left Field: 330 feet (100 m)
Center Field: 400 feet (120 m)
Right Field: 330 feet (100 m)
Tenants
New Orleans Zephyrs (PCL) (1997-present)
New Orleans Storm (USISL) (1998-1999)
Tulane Green Wave (Baseball) (2006-2007)
C-USA Tournament (1998, 2001)
Sun Belt Tournament (1999)
Zephyr Field X.PNG

Zephyr Field is a 10,000-seat baseball park in Metairie, Louisiana, a suburb of New Orleans, that hosted its first regular season baseball game on April 11, 1997, as the tenants of the facility, the New Orleans Zephyrs, defeated the Oklahoma City 89ers, 8-3. The ballpark hosted the 1998 and 2001 Conference USA Baseball Tournaments, and the 1999 Sun Belt Conference Baseball Tournament. Zephyr Field was also the site of the Class 5A Louisiana High School Athletic Association baseball tournament in 2004 and 2005.

History[edit]

In addition to being the home of the Zephyrs, the stadium also hosts select games of the Tulane University Green Wave baseball program. The team plays annual games against cross-town rival, the University of New Orleans Privateers, and arch-rival, Louisiana State University Tigers, at the ballpark. During the 2006 and 2007 baseball seasons, Zephyr Field was the primary home of the Green Wave, as Tulane's on-campus facility, Greer Field at Turchin Stadium, was undergoing renovations. The renovations were scheduled to be completed in time for the 2006 season, but Hurricane Katrina significantly damaged Turchin Stadium, forcing a delay in the project. In the hurricane's aftermath, Zephyr Field was utilized by the Louisiana Army National Guard and the Federal Emergency Management Agency as a rescue facility. In 2006, the state of Louisiana approved $21 million to recover Zephyr Field from the effects of Katrina. Additional funds from the bill covered recovery costs for the New Orleans Saints' training facility, located behind the ballpark, and the New Orleans Arena.[6]

On July 3, 2003, the largest crowd in Zephyr Field history for a Zephyrs game, 11,925, watches the Zephyrs lose 1 to 0 to the Nashville Sounds[7]

Zephyr Field is featured in several scenes in the 2004 movie Mr. 3000, and one from the 2006 movie called Failure to Launch. Also, part of an episode of Spike TV's Pros vs Joes was also filmed at the ballpark.

A new playing surface was installed at Zephyr Field prior to the 2008 season. Its new dimensions are 330 feet (100 m) from home plate to left and right fields, and 400 feet (120 m) to center.[8] The ballpark traditionally allows the fewest home runs in the Pacific Coast League. Zephyr Field's grass berm seating area, "the Levee", is located beyond center field and is the highest point in Metairie.

As a soccer venue, Zephyr Field served as home of the New Orleans Storm soccer team in the late 1990s and hosted the semi-final rounds of the 1998 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.[9]

Ballpark attractions[edit]

Concessions at Zephyr Field feature traditional ballpark fare as well as several regional offerings, such as fried catfish, muffulettas, po' boy sandwiches, jambalaya, and pigskin nachos.

The New Orleans Zephyrs added an extra $5 million to the 2006 state-funded recovery bill for additional amenities, including 16 luxury suites, a swimming pool, two hot tubs, the Coors Light Party Shack, and the Metairie Bank Home Run Porch.[10]

Photos of the park[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Work Begins on Ballpark in New Orleans Site Preparations for Arena Near Superdome Under Way". The Dallas Morning News. December 1, 1995. Retrieved September 21, 2011. 
  2. ^ Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2014. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  3. ^ The Tobler Company "Clients". Retrieved September 21, 2011. 
  4. ^ "New Orleans Zepyhrs Baseball Stadium". Kulkarni Consultants. Retrieved July 1, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Commercial Construction". Joseph Caldarera & Company. Retrieved September 21, 2011. 
  6. ^ "About Zephyr Field". Minor League Baseball. January 23, 2007. Retrieved February 20, 2014. 
  7. ^ "New Orleans Zephyrs History". Minor League Baseball. January 30, 2007. Retrieved February 20, 2014. 
  8. ^ Gladow, David (February 25, 2008). "New Turf to Be Installed at Zephyr Field This Week". The Times-Picayune (New Orleans). Retrieved March 9, 2014. 
  9. ^ "1998 Lamar Hunt United States Open Cup". Lamar Hunt United States Open Cup. 1998. Retrieved February 20, 2014. 
  10. ^ Merzbach, Brian (2008). "Zephyr Field". Ballpark Reviews. Retrieved February 20, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Privateer Park
Home of the
New Orleans Zephyrs

1997 – present
Succeeded by
Current