Warmer temperatures in The Bend usher in one of our favorite pastimes: Baseball in the heart of downtown South Bend.
Four Winds Field is home to the South Bend Cubs, a low-Class A affiliate of the 2016 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs. Visiting Four Winds Field — voted in 2017 as the best low-Class A ballpark in the country — gives fans a chance to see up-and-coming talent as players make their way toward the major leagues. But spending an evening at the ballpark is about more than what’s happening on the field.
Whether it’s a play area for kids or an outstanding promotion, South Bend Cubs games offer all sorts of entertainment.
Bites at the ballpark
Tantalize your taste buds with more than a standard ballpark hot dog or nachos. Four Winds Field changes up the menu yearly to show off its culinary chops.
Looking for comfort food? Try barbecue or Cajun macaroni and cheese. The prime rib burger is sure to be flavor-packed with caramelize onions, Swiss cheese and a horseradish cream sauce. Same goes for the Cajun burger with its pepper jack cheese, andouille sausage and Cajun mayo. If you’re not sold yet, maybe the buffalo chicken sliders or southwest chicken wrap will do the trick.
Either way, you don’t need to have a regular old ballpark meal at Four Winds Field. You can find something both delicious and unique.
Take a swing at the performance center
Sometimes watching just isn’t enough. That’s where the 1st Source Bank Performance Center comes in handy.
Open during home games, the performance center boasts 17,000 square feet with six full-size batting cages. Multiple machines accommodate baseball, fast-pitch softball and slow-pitch softball. One even offers up fastballs in the 85 mile-per-hour range, which means facing pitches at professional speeds. Helmets, bats and balls are all provided on site. This state-of-the-art space is a great place to test your skills or let the baseball player in your family get in some hacks.
What’s minor league baseball without fun promotions? Most home games offer some kind of special promotion — from Thirsty Thursdays to bobblehead giveaways. But one of the best is Sundae FUNday, where fans can hit the field before games to play catch then stay afterward for an autograph session with players and coaches. If you’ve never had a chance to set foot on Four Winds Field, be sure to make a Sunday trip to the ballpark.
For a full list of promotions, click HERE.
Kid friendly fun
Four Winds Field is part baseball diamond and part playground.
Kids need not stay in their seats. Instead they can explore the ballpark, starting with the Toyota Fun Zone. Two three-story slides, five bounce houses and an obstacle course await just beyond the left field foul pole. On the other side of the park, kids can cool down on a hot summer night at the splash park. In between there are speed pitch and Plinko stations.
Ballplayers of all ages can also take some hacks at the 1st Source Bank Performance Center, an indoor practice facility for South Bend Cubs players that’s open during home games. Six full-size, regulation cages offer baseball and softball practice opportunities.
If you’re a regular visitor or a local, the South Bend Cubs Kids Club is a great way to take advantage of the kids areas on a regular basis. Membership is open to children 12 and under. They get a free ticket to 10 Monday-Wednesday regular season games, a membership badge, some Fun Zone wristbands and several other perks. Find more information about the Kids Club HERE.
Learn from the pros
Are you looking for a fun summer activity for your baseball player? The answer may be the Meijer Baseball Academy, a hands on training camp taught by South Bend Cubs coaches and players. Broken into two sessions, attendees learn all about baseball fundamentals. They’ll be coached on hitting, pitching, fielding, catching and base running.
Children ages 6 to 12 are welcome to participate. Find out more information HERE.