Kauffman Stadium, originally called Royals Stadium, is the home of the Kansas City Royals of the American League, and is in a sports complex which lies a few miles east of downtown Kansas City, Missouri. It opened on April 10, 1973, and since then nearly 70 million fans have passed through its gates to watch Royals baseball. For its first 22 years, the stadium had an AstroTurf playing surface, but the Royals converted to grass beginning with the 1995 season. The seating capacity is now at 37,903. See a Kauffman Stadium seating chart for a full map of the available seats at the ballpark. The stadium gets its name from Ewing Kauffman, the original owner of the Kansas City Royals, who died in 1993.
Fans entering Kauffman Stadium are immediately struck by the sight of the high definition scoreboard in center field. The Royals installed it prior to the start of the 2008 season, and it stands at an amazing 104 feet high. After the close of the 2008 season, the Royals added the crown to the top of the scoreboard. Whenever a Royals player hits a home run, flashing strobe lights at the top of the scoreboard add to the excitement of the crowd as they cheer their team on to victory.
The 2009 season brought with it the completion of extensive renovations to Kauffman Stadium. Part of these renovations included one of the most innovative fan amenities in Major League baseball, and the Royals call it the Outfield Experience. Located behind the scoreboard and accessible via gates A and E, Outfield Experience is an area of the stadium that has children’s activities like the MLB2K12 Game Lounge, Carousel, and Batting Challenge. The Royals didn’t forget the parents because Outfield Experience also includes Rivals Sports Bar, Budweiser Patio and the Boulevard Grill.
Every fan who attends a Royals game in 2012 will notice a collection of 120 solar panels mounted on the canopy that houses the Outfield Experience. Just prior to the 2012 season, the Royals joined forces with Kansas City Power and Light to build perhaps the biggest solar energy generating station in Major League Baseball. Royals management estimates that the solar panels are producing about 36,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year, enough to power all of the refrigeration units in the stadium. Solar energy, paperless ticketing and trash recycling are programs that show the Royals’ commitment to going green at Kauffman Stadium.
Hungry fans at Kauffman Stadium have a great dining option called the .390 Bar and Grill located on the third base line at Loge Level. The name of this restaurant honors former Royals player George Brett for his .390 batting average in the 1980 season. The menu features soups, salads, sandwiches and burgers as well as fish and steak entrees. Beverages include coffee, tea, soft drinks and a variety of beers, wines and mixed drinks.
The Water Spectacular in right field is a very well-known attraction at Kauffman Stadium. It is a fountain and waterfall display that measures 322 feet wide and entertains fans between innings during the game.