Dunkin' Park

From BR Bullpen

  • Name: Dunkin' Park
  • GPS-able Address: 1214 Main St., Hartford, CT 06103
  • Ballpark Owner: City of Hartford
  • Architects: Pendulum Studio; The S/L/A/M Collaborative; Newman Architects
  • Groundbreaking: 2/17/2015
  • Minor League Baseball Teams: Hartford Yard Goats (AA) 2017-present
  • Class/League History: AA/Eastern League 2022-present; AA/Double-A Northeast 2021; AA/Eastern League 2017-2020
  • First Professional Baseball Game: 4/13/2017; stadium debut of Class AA Yard Goats
  • Others Playing or Operating Here: None
  • Previous Ballpark Names: Dunkin' Donuts Park 2017-2022
  • LF: 330 CF: 400 RF: 308
  • Seats: 6,121
  • Stated Capacity: 6,850
  • House Baseball/Softball Record Attendance (as currently configured): 7,512, 9/10/2022

Dunkin' Park in Hartford, CT, is the home of the Hartford Yard Goats, the Colorado Rockies' Double-A Eastern League farm team. Opened in 2017 as Dunkin' Donuts Park, its name changed heading into the 2023 campaign - finally matching the 2018 rebrand of its naming sponsor.

As part pf the stadium rebrand, the huge coffee cup that had saluted Goats home runs by steaming was removed from its perch above left field on January 31, 2023. The cup was replaced the following March 21st with one of iced coffee, along with new "Dunkin'"-based signage.

Cost overruns and construction delays for their new ballpark had the Goats planning to play the first month of their initial season, 2016, on the road. The scheduled May 12th home opener was already almost five weeks after the originally scheduled debut. That target was also not met as further delays in construction forced the Goats to postpone their home opener a number of times. On July 22nd, they threw in the towel and announced they would not move into their new ballpark until the following season. Meantime, they played all their games on the road. On July 31st, the team notified the city of Hartford that if the stadium was not completed within six months, they would find another home city.

The EL cautiously scheduled Hartford to open 2017 away, but once the Goats came home their success was quick and solid. After an April 11th college game served as a rehearsal, the Goats' April 13th home debut sold out. The Goats would sell out 41 home games in that first season, to a per-game attendance cap of 6,850. That was rescinded in 2022, and the house baseball record has since crept above 7,500 - including consecutive new records on August 19th and 20th, the latter 7,321, followed by a new mark of 7,512 on the last home Saturday of the campaign.

In 2018, "The Dunk" hosted the first Cape Cod League game ever played in Connecticut and became the first Nutmeg State baseball park to draw 400,000 to see its professional team. It repeated both in 2019 - with 51 sellouts, the last 29 consecutively. The pandemic prevented CCL games in The Dunk the next two years, but the Goats resumed the concept in 2022 as what they now call "The Connecticut Cape Cod Classic" - still, despite what sounds like a tournament, a single game between two CCL teams.

In 2019, to protect children who are allergic to peanuts, DDP became the first peanut-free sports facility in the country. Other stadiums previously had special seating sections and/or specific dates in which those snacks were banned, but none had entirely banned them. Another traditional ballpark food, Cracker Jack, fell victim to the ban as it also contains peanuts.

The ballpark also hosts the University of Connecticut and the University of Hartford on a limited basis.

Further Reading[edit]

  • Zlati Meyer: "You're out! Peanuts, Cracker Jack banned from minor league ballpark", USA Today, February 12, 2018. [1]

Related Sites[edit]

Current ballparks in the Eastern League
Northeast Division Southwest Division
Delta Dental Stadium | Dunkin' Park | FirstEnergy Stadium | Hadlock Field | Mirabito Stadium | TD Bank Ballpark Canal Park | The Diamond | FNB Field | Peoples Natural Gas Field | Prince George's Stadium | UPMC Park