The magazine visited every Minor League Baseball (with the exception of the Arizona & Gulf Coast Leagues) over the past three seasons and released its findings this week. Pensacola’s Bayfront Stadium took top honors.
In describing the stadium, the magazine said: “With Jackson’s history of Minor League Baseball, it should not come as much of a surprise that many fans have readily adopted the Mississippi Braves as their squad. All throughout a game, a buzz can be heard and felt in the stadium. Rarely is there a quiet moment.”
Ratings factors included food and beverage, local neighborhood, fans, access, return on investment, overall atmosphere and an “extras” category. Of the seven categories, Trustmark Park received five-star ratings in four categories. The M-Braves stadium received four-star ratings in the other three categories.
The Mississippi Braves, a Double-A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves, will celebrate 10 years in Mississippi during the upcoming 2014 season. Trustmark Park opened its gates to the public on April 18, 2005. In nine seasons, more than 1.9 million fans have visited attended Braves games at Trustmark Park. In 2013, the M-Braves saw an increase in total attendance for the second consecutive season, welcoming more than 200,000 fans for the first time since the 2008 championship season.
In addition to the Mississippi Braves 70 regular-season games, Trustmark Park hosts three college games each year, highlighted by the Governor’s Cup between Mississippi State and Ole Miss. Trustmark Park also hosts the annual MHSAA Baseball Championships in May, Trustmark’s Red Beans and Rice Celebration in the fall, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk and many other special events.