Tropicana Field

Tropicana Field (originally Florida Suncoast Dome and formerly Thunderdome) is a domed stadium in St. Petersburg, Florida that has been the home of Major League Baseball’s Tampa Bay Rays since the team’s inaugural season in 1998, when they were the Devil Rays. It has also served as the host stadium for the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl, an NCAA-sanctioned college football bowl game, since December 2008. It is currently the only domed stadium in Major League Baseball that is not retractable.

The seating is arranged with odd sections on the left field side, and even sections on the right field side. 100-level seating wraps around the entire field, broken at center field by the Batter’s Eye Restaurant, with loge boxes along the infield from foul pole to foul pole. 200-level seating is the luxury boxes along the foul lines, broken by the press box behind home plate, with the luxury boxes directly behind and above them. 300-level seating wraps around the infield along the lines, and also features the “tbt* Party Deck”, a small-capacity seating area above the left field outfield seats with separate concessions inside. Rows are lettered starting closest to home plate and rise further away.

There are a total of 70 luxury suites. 48 are accessible from the 200-level, while the other 15 are located on the 100-level.

There are a total of 2,776 club seats at Tropicana Field. The Home Plate Club, sponsored by Kane’s Furniture until 2007, features its own entrance, recliner seats and a premium buffet with in-seat service. The second club section, the Hancock Bank Club,[30] is along the first-base side in the 100 section, at the Loge Box level. It features its own premium buffet and premium seating.

Field-level party sections were installed in the corners in 2006. The left field party section is named “162 Landing”, in reference to Evan Longoria’s walk-off home run in the 162nd and final regular season game of the 2011 season that landed in that section, which clinched the American League wild card for the Rays. The right field party section is the “Papa John’s Bullpen Box.” When the right field corner was sponsored by the fast food chain Checkers, tickets to the “Checkers Bullpen Cafe” included a free meal at the Checkers kiosk immediately adjacent to the section. As of 2008, both party sections feature all-you-can-eat buffets.

In 2008, the Rays also set aside a section of the press boxes on the right field side as an all-you-can-eat buffet section with typical ballpark fare. It is usually available for group parties, but it is available for individual ticketing on select dates.

Currently, the top 1/3 of the upper deck seating is tarped over, artificially reducing the stadium’s capacity to 36,048 for the 2008 regular season. It was further reduced to 35,041 for the 2008 postseason since the tbt* Party Deck has been reserved by Major League Baseball as an auxiliary press area. On October 14, 2008, the Rays announced that the upper deck tarps would be removed for the remainder of the postseason, starting with a Game 6 of the 2008 American League Championship Series. This increased the capacity of the stadium to nearly 41,000, depending on standing-room-only tickets sold.[31]

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