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Discussion: Las Vegas--Big league Dreams (Schemes)

Posted Discussion
Nov. 22, 2011
Jack #8
Men's 70
7 posts
Las Vegas--Big league Dreams (Schemes)
Our team had the priviledge of Playing at the complex called Big League Dreams which is a 6 field complex with the fields generally layed out to depict 6 major league fields, Fenway Yankee, Angel, Wrigley, Dodger and Crosley. The outfield fences are painted with the people in the stands etc and the fields are astro turf or something like it. When we arrived at the field we were greeted with a "TSA" type search for any Gatorade, soda etc. No coolers allowed. After looking through my equiptment bag and my wifes's handbag we were allowed to pay $3.00 a piece to enter the field. For that $6.00 we were give 2 tokens worth $1.00 each at the snack bar. Once inside there are no directions to the various fields, and the map of the fields on the SSUSA web site is upside down. The entrance is at the top of the layout instead of at the bottom where the caption is. My wife bought a hot chocolate $2.95 and was not allowed to use the two tokens. Only one could be used per purchase. What a deal!!! We travelled about two thousand miles at the cost of $1200-$1500 for airfare, hotel, car rental, meals etc. to be treated like a terrorist at the gate and then had to pay to play. What did the $525.00 that the sponsor paid for the entry fee go to? One of our players bought gatorade inside the park and made the mistake to take it out when we had several hours between games and when he returned he had to go a put it back in his car. They wouldn't let him in with it even though he bought it at their snack bar. To top this off, there is NO WATER in the dugouts. The SSUSA and the LVSSA should get their act together if the Worlds are to be held in Vegas in 2012. If the players are treated like this at the Big League (Schemes)Dreams, then the complex shouldn't be used.
Nov. 22, 2011
400
Men's 50
76 posts
Jack my team played at the Field of Dreams and thought it was an "Outstanding Facility". In fact we wished there were more of these venues throughout the country. The "TSA" screening was no big deal. I opened every pocket for them and was usually done in 20 seconds or less, with my large travel bag. Water fountains are at the top of the shaded stairs. 5 seconds up 5 seconds back. I have a hard time believing that you were treated like a "Terrorist" unless you acted like one. Every one that I met was courteous and friendly. SSUSA, I cannot thank you enough for working to provide us the opportunity to play in such an awesome facility! The playing surfaces were immaculate and the facilities were clean and beautifully kept. SSUSA thank you for working to make these fields available.
Nov. 22, 2011
pushin60
Men's 60
63 posts
Jack, I have played at the BLD parks for in CA for a long time and they have always run them that way. I never experienced a TSA type search, but they were thorough. They used to not allow Mikens to be used, but you could use the old hot Synergys because they were for sale there. We always had access to water, and the one in Palm Springs even had misters (thank God). The trade off is that, until recently, there werenít any facilities that could compare with them, field-wise. Now both NorCal and SoCal have great facilities that are available to senior tournaments. The problem with BLD is that they donít want the senior teams because they donít spend the money that the kids do for concessions, which means beer, lol.
Nov. 23, 2011
Norcalviejo
Men's 55
8 posts
We played at BLD all weekend and it was great! I took in bottled water all 3 days with no problem and the search was quick and easy. Pain is inevitable and misery is optional.
Nov. 23, 2011
curveball
Men's 65
400 posts
400, we also played 2 days at BLD. No complaints at all. But, the water fountain above our dugout on the 1st base line on Dodger Stadium as turned off!
I take my own water anyway, so no problem for me.

Bag check in saw nothing. He looked in the main compartment only. Small inconvenience for such a nice facility...................
Nov. 23, 2011
Enviro-Vac
Men's 60
391 posts
Our guys loved playing there
Nov. 23, 2011
Webbie25
Men's 60
1956 posts
I think we all liked the facilities on the Desperados. We have almost nothing facility wise in Albuquerque and we would gladly pay the 3 bucks to play in a facility like that here. It's all perspective and from our perspective it looked good.
Nov. 23, 2011
Omar Khayyam
984 posts
The Big League Dreams facility in Manteca CA is built along the same lines. Maintenance has sometimes been a problem there because the outfields are turf and the infields are artificial. Problem is that there can be mudholes in the outfield and very poor patches on the infield in front of bases because of sliding ripping up the artificial turf and patches that are too high laid down to replace the holes.

It is a lot of fun to play in differently configured parks and the wives and fan seating is second to none, as well as the opportunity to watch play from centralized air conditioned dining locations.

Yes, it is irritating to pay $3.00 when you have already plunked down a hefty fee, and the food quality is poor and service slow at the dining area, as well as overpriced. But I have never had a problem bringing in my jug of water and the examination of bags has been brief and not a bother.

All that said, my team likes to play there despite the irritations.
Nov. 24, 2011
DoubleL10
Men's 65
811 posts
I've had the pleasure of playing at several of the BLD venues - from Catherdral City, to Sparks, to League City, TX and Las Vegas. I found them all to be first-class facilities and have always been excited to play there. Some are all turf while some (Las Vegas) have artificial infields and real grass outfields. One of my biggest thrills in softball was to hit a ball completely out of Yankee Stadium.
Nov. 24, 2011
batter4u
Men's 65
74 posts
I enjoy playing at the BLG and we have a good one here in Gilbert,AZ. On a different note, I was attending a conference several years ago and at the start of the conference we we asked to tell something interesting about ourselfs,,, I told the group I had hit home runs in yankee stadium, finwaypark, wrigly field and doger stadium,,,,,then after a pause,,,, explained about BLD's
Nov. 25, 2011
neck10
490 posts
jack are you from detroit???????
Nov. 25, 2011
GI
Men's 60
161 posts
With Winter Words being played in PHoenix area next year , It would be a great time to look into BLG fields in the Mesa Gilbert area. It sure would have been nice to see the field in Vegas but our CJS team did not get out of Sat. Who knows maybe some day even a TOC being played in Phoenix area with good weather Little winds most of time. If you build it THEY will come. Happy holidays to all . 81 degrees here Wed. Not a bad Thanksgiving time. Blessing to all.
Nov. 28, 2011
Benji4
3 posts
Jack

Show me better fields than BLD in the midwest or east coast. You won't be able to.

As for your bag being searched, BLD's were very expensive to build and they make money back through concessions. You could have brought water in.

I'll help you out for the vegas fields:

National League parks to the left American League parks to the right.

Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Searching bags and confiscating food and beverage, if that is what really happened,is absurd. Sure, they are entitled to do whatever they want, and will as long as PT Barnum's people keep walking in the gate.

By the way, if you guys really want the major league experience try hitting balls out of those parks without special bats. Better yet, use wood.
Nov. 28, 2011
SSUSA Staff
1128 posts
"Confiscating" is not what happens/happened at any time in BLD Las Vegas this year. The BLD policy prohibiting bringing in ice chests and outside food and beverage is clearly posted outside the gates, before a patron gets to the bag exam area, and the policy isn't much different from other sports venues, movie theaters, restaurants and the like.

Patrons MAY bring in any non-glass beverage container that has the word 'water' on the label (including the 'flavored/tinted' fortified waters), fresh fruit and vegetables. The patron has the right to [1] consume the item(s) before entering; [2] take any prohibited item(s) back to his/her car for later consumption; or [3] to toss it in the garbage cans, a choice that is solely theirs. The BLD policy DOES allow for patrons to bring in their own outside-purchased coffee type drinks until 10:00 AM.

BLD was THE premier playing location in Las Vegas this year, and was materially less expensive per game than ANY of the five other venues when factoring in Field Rental costs, Field Maintenance and Preparation costs and the City of Las Vegas team 'registration' fees (at $74.25 PER TEAM for any team playing at either Doc Romeo or Lorenzi Parks at any time.) The PER GAME costs for fields this year in Las Vegas ranged from a low of $37.15/game at BLD to a high of $94.97/game at Lorenzi Park. None of the other four venues came in below $50.00 per game, and the overall average was $54.44/per game (exclusive of umpire fees.)

It's rare in our experience that the best venue at a tournament location also turns out to be the least expensive one as well.

Nov. 28, 2011
hitman
Men's 65
298 posts
Dirty,
Why don't you just go on a baseball board and stay the **** off the softball board since everything you say and comment on is negative about Senior Softball.
Not just my opinion but the opinion of many if not most on this board.

The Hitman
Nov. 28, 2011
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
G19 you never played at Softball World in Brookpark Ohio?
Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Staff, it is fine to say that signs are posted. But what happens if, despite the signs, someone shows up at the gate with a sandwich in their bag? Or Gatorade?

Are you saying they don't take the sandwich or Gatorade? That they allow them into the complex? If not, that would pretty much be confiscating.

hitman, please tell me what is right about not allowing a sandwich into the park? Or anything that is non-water? On top of charging you for the privilege to play on their fields AFTER they charged you a pretty hefty entry fee.

Tool, yes I did. But not often. A few tournaments, never league. Paid a buck to get in, which was not well-received when they first opened, but NO one checked my bag for food or drinks. Oh, and you did get a token worth a buck at the concession stand, so at least in that regard you did break even. They did not charge $3 and only give you a dollar token.
Nov. 28, 2011
SSUSA Staff
1128 posts
Same options as stated above ...

The patron has the right to [1] consume the item(s) before entering; [2] take any prohibited item(s) back to his/her car for later consumption; or [3] to toss it in the garbage cans, a choice that is solely theirs.
Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Fair enough, technically they don't take it from you. Though given those three choices, depending on what you brought they might as well.

And to search bags is just a bit much. But I understand it is their game, their rulss, and the way to express your disatisfaction with being treated that way as a paying customer is with your wallet/checkbook.
Nov. 28, 2011
Lecak
Men's 55
1006 posts
Gary the important thing is it is their park not yours, not mine not the taxpayers, privately funded facility. I live in Vegas, it is not that big a deal. The BLD facility beats all of the other facilities we have here by a mile. Anybody on here remember the old Freedom park facilities that is where this one stands. You live in Cleveland I'm sure your tax payer funded pro facilities do bag searches, limit food brought in etc. Why don't you start with your publicly funded facilities and let private facilities run their facilities how they deem fit. If the customers don't come so be it.
Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Lecak, I know that and said it a number of times. It is theirs to do with as they wish, no question about it. Where did I say otherwise? But that doesn't make it any less absurd, nor any less of a reason to talk with your checkbook.

I think the difference is I could never bring in my own food at professional facilities, at least not that I can recall, so I suppose in some way that became de facto accepted. I used to be able to, and still can at many parks, bring in food and Gatorade when I play.

So there is a choice. Pay a fee to play ON TOP of paying to enter, and then HAVE to buy their food and beverage, or play without an admission charge AND be able to bring in my own stuff. That one sounds pretty easy to me.



Nov. 28, 2011
hitman
Men's 65
298 posts
Dirty,

If I go to a resturant, bowling alley , bar, etc. I can't take food or drink into any of these facilities.
They are in business for a reason.
I can't bring my own stuff in and freeload on their premises and watch games on TV or whatever. Most cities actually have laws/ordinances governing the prohabition of food and drink being brought on the premises and they are plainly posted at all entrances.

The Hitman
Nov. 28, 2011
tg69
304 posts
We were at the BLD facility in Vegas.Very nice place to play.Someone has to pay for such a nice park.I dont think you would go to your local tavern with a six pack of beer under your arm nor would you go to a theatre with a grocery sack full of popcorn,as they sell that there.Hearsay that the park cost $35 million to build so dont expect to play for free.JMO
Nov. 28, 2011
stick8
1261 posts
Hitman, maybe I'm missing something here but I'm befuddled as to why anyone would care to bring their own food or drink into a restaurant?
Nov. 28, 2011
hitman
Men's 65
298 posts
Just saying for example if you were going to WILD WINGS to watch a game they wouldn't let you bring in KFC to the establishment and watchuse there TV's for a game.
Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
I think many of these analogies, perhaps mine too, are falling short in many ways.

hitman, most (all?) restaurants, bowling alleys, and bars don't charge you to get in. Wild Wings does not charge you either. These complexes do. TWICE. The entry fee and the gate fee. So the parks, in these cases, are making money above and beyond the concessions.

tg, same thing. The local tavern doesn't charge you twice to walk in. The theatre does charge you once, but at least they are providing you a movie.

I understand they are private businesses, have a right to a profit, and can run their business however they legally choose to. I also understand what I posted above. "Pay a fee to play ON TOP of paying to enter, and then HAVE to buy their food and beverage, or play without an admission charge AND be able to bring in my own stuff. That one sounds pretty easy to me."

That is where I personally would draw the line.
Nov. 28, 2011
tg69
304 posts
Gary19.what complex did you play at in Vegas?I havent heard one complaint from those who actually played at BLD.Its worth a little extra to get true hops on those infields.No divits,no lip around the infield grass and no holes in the batters box.Ill take that every day for $3.00 more.
Nov. 28, 2011
Lecak
Men's 55
1006 posts
Gary you should open your own complex then not condescending comment either. There is plenty of land here in Vegas good luck with the financing on a softball park though. They are not offering an either or scenario. They are charging it people are paying it they must think it is worth it. Your comment on PT Barnum I don't think applies with these facilities, they are a vast step above what we have in town, they are great family places, I have been in the one here in Vegas on an off nite and there are alot of non softball related activities taking place. Pick a better fight if you saw these facilities it would make more sense. It's like any else they could bury the fee or be transparent about it personally I prefer the latter.
Nov. 28, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
tg, if you read Jack's post that started this thread you will see on guy who played there who has some complaints with some things.

They might very well be the greatest field ever made, great. And no fight intended. But the growing idea of charging entry fees on top of gate fees on top of banning outside food and beverages on top of what are often over-priced concessions to play a kid's game is where suckers are being exposed.

If you guys want to pay on top of paying on top of paying, obviously go right ahead. We all make choices on how we spend our money. I just happen to think it is a bad trend, but that could be just me.
Nov. 28, 2011
mad dog
Men's 60
3930 posts
lets see..for a movie they charge you go in and watch it,no outside food/drink let in.BLD charges you to go into their facility to play a tourney.the assoc that holds the tourney charges the tourney fee,not BLD....BLD has a concession place with food and beverages,why would they allow outside food and drink in,they also have tv's to watch ball games for whatever season that is being played,college or pro,oh they are free to watch,no extra charge....

so how is maint to be done for the park,without money,seems to me $3 to use their park is kind of cheap.....
Nov. 28, 2011
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
G19, your on top of paying on top of paying comment i don't buy lol. get it G i don't buy lololol, what am i missing? the entry fee has nothing to do with the gate fee. Why would any private complex let food and drink in? A bad trend? 3bucks, 12 quarters most guys can walk out to there car or hit up the change jar or even look in there bat bag and come up with a 3 spot lol. Your embarrassing these parts of Cleveland Ohio, your reply's are getting weak and weaker for a non active player/coach/sponsor a non contributor to a game most of us love.
Nov. 29, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
So you guys don't think the facility gets any money (which would clearly come from the entry fees) from the association? I admit I am not positive on this one, but I can't imagine the association does not pay some kind of "rent" to the facility. I am sure the Staff knows this for sure, and I don't, but I can see where that transaction would take place.

Tool, paying (entry fee) on top of paying (gate fee) on top of paying (over-priced concessions).

Again, I UNDERSTAND why the private complexes charge what they do. (How many times do I have to write that?) But as long as there are MANY parks that do not, and have historically not, I will prefer to play at those complexes and leave the gouging to others.

By the way Tool, you mentioned Softball World before. That was an example of a horribly maintained set of fields that people were paying gate fees to play on. Yes, at least you got a concession token equal to your gate fee, but the fields were very sandy (I am sure done to try and maximize drainage and minimize rainouts which would hurt their revenue stream). Consequently they were not very good to play on at all.
Nov. 29, 2011
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
Yes i did mention Softball World, they took advantage or should i say they had the next great set up back in 83(5fields around a bar) the percentage of whiners about paying was quite low as i suspect this topic is too, even when they lost the top teams and top players because of conditions and cost, they still kept the players that play for fun/corporate/coed etc etc because of the bar and food, they had a liquor license.

I just realized this is pretty weak discussion sorry guys... i know i have 3bucks and excited to check this facility out as i imagine any ball player would.
Nov. 29, 2011
tg69
304 posts
I never said I liked the cover charge,I just didnt CRY about it.They did give you a $1 token to use in the concession stand so technically it was $2.No one forces you to eat and drink at the park,strictly your option.We took water in every game so you would not dehydrate.They stamp your hand so if you wanted to leave to the parking lot you would not pay to get back in.You never did say what facility you were at in Vegas or if you were actually there.If you werent there,dont worry about how we,the ones that did go,spent their money.Heck,I even put $5 in a SLOT machine and Im still trying to recover from that.We played 6 games at the BLD and it cost me $6 to play.Ill give a buck a game to play on such a facility.
Nov. 29, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Tool, the whining was mitigated by getting concessions credit equaling the gate fee. Paying $3 to get a $1 token might have caused a different reaction.

The players they kept were kept strictly because of the bar. Ever play, or as I did ump, late night games after these rec players loaded up while waiting to play. Just not a good situation for anyone but the owner, I suppose.

tg, sure no one forces anyone to eat or drink at the park. But if you are there for the day at a tourney, and they don't allow your stuff in, really what choice do you have? So yea in a way, they are forcing you, or at the very least just not giving you any choice depending on your situation. I know you can leave and come back, but that is not always practical again depending on your situation.

AGAIN (geez this is tiring), I don't care how you spend your money (I think I have said that a number of times now), and I don't ever recall saying I was worrying about it. Spend how you will, but if there are very suitable free alternatives out there I will continue to use those.
Nov. 29, 2011
tg69
304 posts
Gary 19.This will be my LAST word as far as responding to your posts.But I am curious.I have seen where people have asked you in the past if you play and travel the senior circuit but have never seen a response from you.How about it?
Nov. 29, 2011
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
G19 can not say because of equipment, here in Cleveland area there are two 50over leagues 1.with asa bats only and worth gold mush dots and floating rubber 2.senior bats/trump balls and a screen.Heck almost forgot they have a day league but that i believe is 55 and up.
Nov. 29, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
tg, just keep in mind because you haven't seen a response doesn't mean I haven't given them. I traveled in 2006 and 2010. Both years I tended to see the same things, small brackets and repetitive teams. At least this was the case in the "local" tournaments (Ohio, Michigan, Indiana). Did not play in any "nationals", which I understand are much better and more diversely attended.

Tool, actually there are more than two that I know of. Barberton, Maple Heights, Painesville, Mayfield Village, Brook Park, and Parma Heights. And you are right, the rules do to some extent vary between them.

I am thinking you are talking about Maple with the senior bats and screen (thank Shelly for that), and Mayfield Village for the ASA bats. Barberton uses senior bats with a 44/375 ball and (thank God) no screen. Not sure how they play in the others I mentioned.
Nov. 29, 2011
Lecak
Men's 55
1006 posts
Gary if you haven't played in Vegas or live here not sure how you can intelligently comment on the state of our facilities. The BLD is far superior to anything else in town. Due to municipal budget cuts some of the other fields are dreadful. Your thoughts on the state of senior ball make sense because softball is softball where ever played. Commenting on local conditions not so much. It would be like me commenting on Northern Ohio facilities and the state of your local budgets its folly on my part. The BLD facility is well maintained with very nice areas for families. My wife loves watching games there and won't watch anywhere else we play.
Nov. 29, 2011
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
I don't think I EVER made any comments about the state of your facilities, only about the business model they are using and the guys who buy into it. And my comments were not really intended just for your facilities, but anywhere where this model is being used. Nothing personal toward Vegas at all.

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