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What you need to know before going to a Trash Panda game this season

Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 12:39 PM CDT
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MADISON, Ala. (WAFF) - Ahead of the first-ever home opener in Rocket City Trash Pandas history, there are a few things the staff want fans to know.

Lindsey Knupp, the Trash Pandas VP of Marketing, Promotions and Entertainment, said the most important thing fans can do is get their parking pass ahead of time.

“Getting that ticket and having it on your phone ready to go is going to be the biggest thing to help get everyone through the line fast, so we’re not typing to stop, take payment and answer questions,” Knupp said.

She said all fans need to do to get their ticket ahead of time is download the “CLUTCH!” app on their phone, go to “Reserve”, select “Minor League Baseball”, click “Rocket City Trash Pandas” and select which game they’re going to. Fans can then buy their parking pass for $6.

Knupp said buying the ticket ahead of time is also cheaper, if you buy it when you get to the stadium it will be $10, instead of $6.

If you do have to buy your parking pass at the stadium, don’t forget Toyota Field is entirely cashless. You will need to have a debit or credit card to buy anything at Trash Panda games.

If you only have cash, Knupp said you can bring it to the team store to exchange for a gift card during the game.

When you’re heading to the game, especially on opening night, Knupp said it’s best to get there early. The earlier you get there, the more likely you are to avoid traffic.

For those looking to avoid as much traffic as possible, Knupp said the quickest ways to get to the ballpark are the newer roads.

“In my mind, just seeing what we experienced from the Christmas light show, would be coming through Intergraph and the ramp because those are two new spots,” she said. “Everyone knows Zierdt Rd., so that is the comfortable way for people to come through because that’s what they know.”

For fans who do arrive early, Knupp said gates will open at 5 p.m. on opening night and there will be a band playing on the Rock Porch as fans enter.

Fans can also tailgate out in the parking lot while they’re waiting for the game to start.

Knupp said they’re expecting every single parking spot to be filled when games sell out, so she suggests you carpool as best you can.

As you head into Trash Panda games, don’t forget only clear bags are allowed. Knupp said you can keep items in your pockets or a Ziploc bag if you don’t have a clear bag.

Lastly, you cannot get into Toyota Field without a mask!

Knupp said you have to wear one when you enter and are walking around, but can take it off when eating or drinking.

On top of the masks, there are a few other COVID-19 restrictions fans should know about.

Knupp said players are not allowed to give autographs. She said this is an MLB rule and stinks for both the players and fans.

“That just hurts them as much as it does the child that wants to get their autograph, they want to give it,” she said.

But, Knupp said some restrictions have loosened, including on-field mascot races and more.

“It’s going to make the game and the experience and the entertainment for fans so much better,” she said. “We can go on-field to shoot t-shirts now and slingshot t-shirts, we were going to have to do that in the stands. Our National Anthem performer can now be on the field, instead of in the stands or under the video board.”

She said these new rules came down a few days ago, just in time for the Trash Pandas first home game.

“So that’s a great sign to me that even before our home opener they’re easing up a little bit,” Knupp said. “Hopefully that means that as the season progresses maybe the mask gets lifted, maybe we get to go back to taking the plexiglass off the dugouts.”

The last important thing Knupp wants fans to bring to Toyota Field: their patience.

“Even with our concert on Friday night, we were trying to operate as if we would on a game day with our parking attendants out there, so we learned some things already just with doing that one event,” Knupp said. “Every game we’re going to learn more of how to ease through different things.”

If you want to be a part of all the fun at Toyota Field this season, Knupp said they are still looking for several positions.

“We do have a lot of opportunities still in our food and beverage department to be cashiers, runners, bartenders, suite attendants,” she said. “We could even use more parking attendants and ushers.”

If you’re looking to just enjoy the games as a fan, there are still tickets to every game this season except for opening night. You can find tickets at the Trash Panda website or Toyota Field Ticket Office.

For all the rules heading into opening day, you can also check out the “Toyota Field A-Z Guide.”

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