The Indians kicked off their second winter of “Snow Days” at Progressive Field with a “Snowpening Day,” November 25. We at Wahoo’s on First were invited to the Media Day preview, November 22.
I was the lucky writer who got to experience the event, which runs weekends from now until January 16 and seven days a week from December 16 to January 2. Snow Days features an inner-tube slide known as “The Batterhorn,” an ice-skating area called “The Frozen Mile,” a children’s ice rink “Rookie Rink” and several warming areas for games and crafts. New this year to Snow Days is “The Frozen Diamond,” a regulation-sized hockey rink that will feature The Ohio State University vs. University of Michigan hockey game, January 15.
I attended the Snow Days media day last year, and my biggest gripe was the two-hour time slots for the Batterhorn. The Indians have done away with the time slots this year, and now the Batterhorn is available all day.
Admission is $5 if you just want to get into the ballpark, look at the sights, and wish it were April. But if you want the full Snow Days experience with access to the ice skating and Batterhorn, you’d need to drop $25. I find the ticket prices a lot easier to swallow this year since you can use the Batterhorn all day.
I don’t (can’t) ice skate, so I was a little limited in what I could do. But the Batterhorn, which slopes down the Home Run Porch into shallow center field, is an absolute blast. The warming areas have Playstation 3′s with games that are free to play, as well as the cheapest beer you’ll probably find at a professional sports park in Ohio. I can definitely see myself taking my little brother to see a hockey game there and hitting up the Batterhorn 20 times before the puck drops.
I love the idea of Snow Days. I am a little disappointed that ice skating is still a huge part of the experience (I’d challenge the Indians to find something for the uncoordinated), but I feel it does far more good than many people realize. Although the actual Indians team probably doesn’t reap too many benefits, the city of Cleveland sure does. Many Snow Days employees are Progressive Field employees who can now make a little extra money over Christmas, not to mention all the extra people who were hired to set up the place. It brings some people to downtown Cleveland, which is usually dead in the winter. So Snow Days is a win for the city.
If you’re looking for a place to take the kids over the holidays, heading down to Snow Days is a good choice.