Updated: Apr 8, 2019
If you like baseball and even if you’re not an avid fan, a trip to “The Joe” (Riley Stadium) to catch a RiverDogs game is a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening in Charleston, and here are the reasons why:
1. The Stadium. Built in 1997 on the banks of the Ashley River (yes, there’s an amazing view of the marsh), the 6000-seat Riley Park is easily accessible and strives to provide the best fan experience possible in minor-league baseball. You’ll understand why once you move through the turnstiles. Fun surprises abound at every game, whether it’s Boiled Peanuts Night, Monday Dog Days (featuring dollar beers and hot dogs), firework displays, or helicopter ball drops.
2. The Themes. The 2019 season will kick off its 70 home games on April 11 with its theme to “Make Fun” all season long. Some notable theme nights include C-Night on May 14 (because baseball is a game of averages), so fans are invited to an “average” night with “C” food specials, and kids who bring a “C” on their report card get in for free. Or come on June 15 for Balloons Night in honor of 10 years of the movie “Up.”
3. The Food. Thankfully you won’t find the usual mediocre hamburgers, pizza, and fries here. But you will find creative cuisine, and that’s part of the fun. Fried green tomato and pimento grilled cheese; a chicken and waffle bowl drizzled with hot honey; Mediterranean Healthy Nachos (hummus, guacamole, pico de gallo, olives and feta cheese); or French fries topped with mac and cheese, jalapeno bacon crumbles, fried onion straws, and barbecue sauce are some of the offerings. Pair them with local craft beers, such as the BellyItcher Ale or the famous beer shakes - an all new one for this season is a Strawberry Lemonade.
4. The Team. The RiverDogs are a minor league team that plays in the Class Single-A South Atlanta League and are an affiliate of the New York Yankees. For 2019 the Yankees’ once again highlight the roster - three hard-throwing right-handers are among four of the Yankees’ top-30 prospects currently slated to open the season here. The team has finished top-2 in the South Atlantic League in ERA the past three seasons.
5. The Co-owner and Director of Fun. Bill Murray. Yes, that Bill Murray of Caddyshack, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day fame. His love of baseball means you might see him in the stands or throwing out a ceremonial first pitch. Or selling the RiverDogs to fans.
6. The Prices. You can get season tickets, half-season tickets, or individual tickets for reasonable prices ($10 and up). And food is not expensive either. Enough said for a great time at the ballpark!