The Friendly Confines

 

Wrigley Field

Chicago, IL

May 1, 2017

The Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field has been a must-see destination for baseball fans for over a century. Located on Chicago’s north side in its namesake neighborhood, Wrigleyville, sits Major League Baseball’s second oldest ballpark.

Home to the 2016 World Series champions, Wrigley Field has witnessed far more agony than ecstasy. 2003 was the most agonizing for the majority of living Cubs fans. Do you remember that one? NLCS. Game 6. Moises Alou. Foul ball in left field. That jog your memory? If not, maybe the name Steve Bartman will.

One date most Cubs fans won’t remember is June 7, 2013. However, this day spent at Wrigley Field is one I will never forget.

My at-the-time girlfriend, Madeleine, was visiting me in Chicago only two weeks after we started dating. We were still figuring out how our new long distance relationship was going to work. What do we do? Where do we go? We wanted to maximize our time together, that was for sure.

I knew what I wanted to do – go to a baseball game at Wrigley. I knew she was a sports fan, but to what extent was unknown. Luckily for me, she liked the idea and agreed to go. The Cubs fell to the Pirates 2-0, but I didn’t care. 

We did reach a relationship milestone that day worth noting. It was the first time someone asked us if we were married or had kids. Part of me wanted to respond “yes” just to see Madeleine’s reaction, but she quickly chimed in with a “No, this is only our second date.” Guess I knew where I stood at the time.

Those confines were friendly to me on that day. In fact, Madeleine agreed to a third date and eventually she even agreed to marry me. Maybe I should credit a small piece of our relationship to Wrigley Field.

Having visited Wrigley Field a few times and living nearby for a summer, here are my tips for anyone planning a trip to see the Cubs.

1- From The Loop (downtown) take the Red Line going north to the Addison stop. As you step off the “L” you basically walk into the exterior wall of Wrigley Field. You can’t miss it.

2- Arrive early: Take some time to walk around Wrigleyville, grab lunch, and take in the stadium before first pitch. There is a lot of history and passion surrounding the Cubs that is unique for a professional sports team.

3- Don’t buy a ticket for an obstructed view seat that is behind a support beam. Do some quick research before buying your tickets. Stadium architecture in the early 1900s wasn’t as sophisticated, but I guess that’s just part of what makes Wrigley unique.  

4- Prepare as if you are going to a party, but beware that a baseball game might break out. Seriously, the vibe at Wrigley feels more like a celebration than a professional sporting event.

Have you been to Wrigley Field? If so, comment below with your stories and memories.