Shrine on Airline

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(Redirected from Zephyr Field)

The Shrine on Airline
Shrine on Airline
Location Metairie, Louisiana United States
29.975659; -90.199121
Building chronology
Built 1997
New Orleans Zephyrs
Zephyr Field from space.

The Shrine on Airline in Metairie, LA, was the home of New Orleans affiliated baseball from 1997 through 2019. After that, and the Coronavirus pandemic-canceled 2020 season, the New Orleans Baby Cakes of the Pacific Coast League moved into a new ballpark in Wichita, KS, as the Wichita Wind Surge.

It is unusual for an HOK Sport (now Populous) ballpark in that it is not located downtown. It opened as Zephyr Field in 1997 for the then-New Orleans Zephyrs. It later staged relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina.

Second-year owner Lou Schwechheimer dumped the name "Zephyrs" after the 2016 season and also rebranded the stadium with its address-based nickname. It appears in the films Mr. 3000 (2004) and Failure to Launch (2006). The second season of TV's Brockmire (2017-20) was set there, although shot elsewhere, so the Cakes played twice in their last season as Brockmire's punctuation-challenged Crawdaddy's.

New Orleans baseball history being full of "Pelicans" - the state bird - why "Zephyrs"? In 1993, two expansion-bumped minor league teams aimed for New Orleans. The Triple-A Denver Zephyrs trumped the Double-A Charlotte Knights, but when the dust settled NFL New Orleans Saints owner Tom Benson ended up with sports rights to "Pelicans". He later bought and rebranded the NBA's New Orleans Hornets.