Chronological Tour: Stop 328

Smelling like Something Other Than a Rose

Home-plate entrance to Sovereign Bank Stadium, Aug-2007.

The seating bowl, as seen from the outfield next to the scoreboard.

Looking out at the field from directly behind home plate.

Quick Facts: Rating: 2 baseballs
As the story goes, security guards at Palisades Amusement Park, a facility that operated for about 60 years in Cliffside Park, N.J., saw local kids streaming into the park through a hole in the fence by the performance stage. They asked the proprietor to fix the hole, so he could collect admission from the kids. The proprietor replied, “Let ’em go. I want ’em to come in. They’ll spend more money if they get in for free than they ever would spend if they had to pay admission.”

This lesson appeared to be lost on the operators of Sovereign Bank Stadium (now PeoplesBank Park), the home of Atlantic League baseball in York, Pa. I showed up to take a look at this nearly-completed facility on a Sunday afternoon which was billed as a “Faith and Family Day”, featuring a post-game concert by a Christian band popular in the area. When I got to the ticket seller, I was told that I would have to pay an extra $3 for admission because of the concert. Nowhere in the advertising for the event did it say that there would be a surcharge. I paid it, because I wanted to see a baseball game, but the York Revolution lost the additional revenue they would have gotten from me on concessions, souvenirs, etc. I refused to spend an additional penny at the park on principle.

To top it off, a fan at the game told me that he had been denied admission to the park in the late innings of a previous game. The ticket windows were closed, but he was told he could not enter without a ticket, despite the fact that there were no longer any tickets being sold. Apparently, it hasn’t dawned on the club yet that not only does this leave a bad taste in the customer’s mouth, it potentially lowers revenue because the fan who’s not allowed in can’t visit the concession stand.

Sovereign Bank Stadium faced delays in opening. The Revolution had to play their home games in Camden for the first month of the season. Even as late as August, the park was not yet complete. On top of that, the concourse seems rather narrow in many places, making navigation difficult when a nice crowd shows up.

On the plus side, there are several design features that make visiting the park a unique experience. Foremost among these would be the left-field wall, which is styled after the “Green Monster” at Fenway Park, built slightly taller though it’s closer to the plate. You can walk behind the wall and watch the operators of the manual scoreboard doing their job. There is also an extensive kids’ play area in the outfield, including a working carousel.

Game # Date League Level Result
891 Sun 26-Aug-2007 Atlantic Ind. Lancaster 8, YORK 4
979 Sat 20-Sep-2008 Atlantic Ind. YORK 8, Lancaster 1
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This page updated 18-Jul-2016