Minute Maid Park
Home of the Houston Astros
Team: Houston Astros
Stadium Capacity: 40,950
Minute Maid Park may have earned the nickname The Juice Box, but trains are the theme here, from the refurbished Union Station that many fans enter through to the replica locomotive that runs on a track above left field. Fans can now take a light rail line to the game, too, although this is Houston so most are driving. The huge glass wall in left field (hurricane resistant glass) provides light and a view of downtown even when the retractable roof is closed.
Minute Maid Park is in the heart of the city, ironically a part of town that a lot of suburb-lovin’ Houstonians rarely visit. But if you’re going to an Astros game, take advantage of the best of the neighborhood: friendly bars, great food and a cultural mish-mash of locals and tourists. … If you don’t live in Midtown or downtown, do yourself a favor and drive to one of the city’s Park and Ride lots that also double as stations for the METRO Rail. From there, you can hop on the rail – tickets are just $2 – and head to the bars around the ballpark. … If you’re in a party mood, head to B.U.S. Bar just across from the park on Texas Street. The place resembles an open-air garage and is uber-casual, but it can get pretty rowdy on game day. … If you’re looking for a bite to eat before heading to the game, walk next door to Home Plate Bar and Grill; it’ll be crowded so try the balcony if you want a table. … Now that it’s about time for the National Anthem, all you have to do is stumble across the street to the park, take a quick bathroom break and head to your seats. … Once there, get to know your neighbors. Astros fans may not be as rowdy as fans at some other ballparks but they’re friendly, and by mid-game you’re likely to be making post-game plans with your seat-mates or talking about meeting up for the next game. … The best eats inside the park are on the first level. This being Texas there’s good Mexican and barbeque, but the best bet might be the giant sausages from Texas-based Kiolbassa. Get it early, though, before the lines form and they run out. … Stay local with your brew, too, and have a Shiner Bock. … After the game, walk a few blocks west to Main Street, Midtown’s main strip, and enter The Flying Saucer, a large pub that boasts more than 200 beers on tap and in bottles. … If you’re in the mood to venture a few blocks further, hail a cab from the ballpark and go to either the Front Porch or Little Woodrow’s in Midtown. Both are low-key bars but famous hangouts for Houstonians with a love of specialty beers and unique drinks.
B.U.S. Bar, 1800 Texas St., (713) 222-2287
Home Plate Bar and Grill, 1800 Texas St., (713) 222-1993
The Flying Saucer, 705 Main St., (713) 228-9472
Little Woodrow’s, 2306 Brazos, (713) 522-1041
Front Porch, 217 Gray Street, (713) 571-9571
Wise Guide Tips / Know what the locals know, go where the locals go
At Wise Guides, we believe “spectator” should be a verb. Not because you should suck down 12 beers, run on the field and try to take the first baseman’s job — you shouldn’t. It’s because there’s so much more to going to a game than simply sitting in your seat watching the action. There are stadiums and neighborhoods to explore, food and drink to try, history to learn and interesting people to meet. Try our Wise Guides tips, they are funny, helpful and, we hope, interesting.
A Texan Juice Box
Minute Maid Park opened in 2000 on the spot downtown where Houston’s Union Station used to stand – a railroad station that is credited with bringing growth and prosperity to the city in the early part o... Read more »