Dickey-Stephens Park Ranked No. 153 In the Nation

Rainouts contributed to a drop in attendance this year, to 293,749 compared with 308,109 last year.

Strange, I know, but we're thinking a lot about baseball this week, probably because of our print edition cover story on the Arkansas Travelers. Todd Traub takes a look at the Texas League team about a year after management changes that signaled a new era in central Arkansas minor league baseball.

And it's Traub who notes on Facebook the latest rankings of minor league baseball parks by Stadium Journey magazine. The rankings find Dickey-Stephens in North Little Rock at No. 153 on the list of 160 parks around the country:

Dickey-Stephens Park is a good experience. The atmosphere is an adult one, especially with features such as the Beer Garden. If you are a fan who really enjoys baseball stadiums for the sake of baseball, this probably is not the park for you. But if you are a casual fan just looking to have a good time, then this park will provide an enjoyable evening at the ballpark.

You can dig deeper into how the magazine ranked Dickey-Stephens right here. Traub, and some of his Facebook pals, take some issue. That skyline view alone should place it higher, right?

Update: Ronny Clay, a native Arkansan who now lives in Pensacola, Fla., writes in with his comments on the ranking:

I was an enormous fan of Ray Winder Field and I really enjoy Dickey-Stephens Park when I get the chance to come back and visit. I have been to the new park in Pensacola, home of the Blue Wahoos. The ranking of ballparks is One Persons opinion. 

I love outdoor baseball and minor league baseball. To be in a ballpark, any ballpark, on a summer evening is one of the more relaxing atmospheres that a ball fan can experience. There is not a lot different in the ballparks this person ranks #1 and #153.  Personally, I prefer the latter. 

I generally do not go to the ballpark to enjoy the "neighborhood" and I generally am not looking for a "gourmet" experience. I go to enjoy the outdoors, the warm summer night, the green grass and being with friends. A cold beer and a hot dog is almost essential too. I always said that minor league baseball is exciting: if the game is not so good you enjoying visiting with friends; it the game is exciting, you enjoy the game.  I just don’t see how you can go wrong.

Where would this guy rank Ray Winder field? One of the oldest ballparks in America and it was a Wonderful experience!

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