Ok, so baseball is one of my least favourite sports. The slow pace and all the standing around in that great big greenspace gets me sleepy and annoyed. And as far as watching the pros go, I find it hard to get behind these rarely running players and their exorbitant salaries.
But then one of them hits a home run or makes a ridiculously amazing bid for the ball, and I am on my feet ready to jump on the Blue Jays bandwagon. Well, at least for one day.
That’s what happened when I took one for the team and headed to a Toronto Blue Jays game on a Saturday at the start of the season. Gotta say, Jr. Jays Saturdays are the way to go. The stadium is filled with families, there is a whole whack of activities for kids in TOw, AND —- fans 14-and-under can run the bases post-game.
We lasted nine innings to do just that.
Yes, there were long line-ups, yes there was lots of waiting, and yes a healthy dose chaos when hundreds of little kids were set loose field level.
But it’s definitely worth a whirl to have your kids circle the bases like the big (Blue Jay) boys. Here’s how:
Tips for Running the Bases at the Blue Jays game:
- Go on a Saturday – that’s the only day when you can run the bases post-game. Jr. Jays Saturdays has the kid-friendliest experience.
- Consider joining the Jr. Jays Club by purchasing a Jr. Jays Membership. For $25.99, you get swag, discounts and other extra benefits like Front of the Line Access to run the bases.
- If you stick it out to the end of the game, line up early, like around the 8th inning and pray the Jays don’t go into extra innings. You can line up at Sections 108, 208 and 508. I didn’t check out the queue in 108 or 208 but half of our ‘team’ lined up at 508 at the top of the 8th and were near the front of the non-Jr. Jays members’ line. We missed the game winning homerun but when the other half of our family arrived, they passed hundreds of fans in line.
- Be prepared to wait in the concrete stairwell. We waited at least 30 minutes before we started our descent to field level. The Jr. Jays members filed down to field level to run the bases first.
- Prepare your kid for the experience, especially if they are little. Once you get to field level, there is no instruction. The kids take off at 1st base and you shuffle along the sideline trying to make sure you make it to homebase when they do.
- Adults cannot run the bases. Blue Jays staff line either side of the bases and cheer the kids on with high fives, keeping the constant stream of kids on track until homebase.
- It happens fast so have your cameras ready and try not to lose sight of your kid in the sea of blue shirts and hats.
- There is no access to other areas of the field or dugouts but you can spend a few minutes after to take in the view and some more photos.
Other Trip Tips for Jays games with Kids in TOw:
- Getting there: The Directions to Rogers Centre and best ways to get there.
- You can bring your stroller to the game – not around the bases of course. During the game, strollers must be checked at Guest Services. On weekends, 200- and 500-level ticket holders have access to Jr. Jays Stroller Valets in section 205 and 530.
- Prefer non boozy sections? Sections 236L/237/238R and 520L/521R (first 14 rows only) are designated non-alcoholic.
- Jr. Jays zones are located in 100, 200 and 500 level concourse, starting at 11 a.m. running to 8th inning. From June 3 to August 26, extra family-friendly activities are located outside gates 10/11 from 11 a.m. to first pitch.
- On Jr. Jays Saturdays, keep your eyes peeled for J Force who randomly selects kids to participate in fun in-game activities like the Jr. Jays Starting Lineup, the 7th inning stretch, act as the Jr. Jays Announcer for an inning, and pick the music for inning break as the Jr. D-Jay.
- Family washrooms and designated nursing rooms are available near sections 134, 238 and 539.
- Snacks – no outside food (we brough in water bottles). Here are the food options at Rogers Centre.
- You can buy your tickets online, starting at $10 in the 500s. Kids two-and-under can enter without a ticket but must sit on the lap of an accompanying adult. Booster seats are available at Guest Services. (You’ll be asked to leave a piece of ID.)
- Keen to learn the lay of land? Here is the Amenities Map by section.
View from Row 2 of the 500s: