|Victory Field opened in the middle of the 1996 season as a replacement for the legendary Bush Stadium. The new ballpark marked a move to the downtown area of Indianapolis as their old home was located a residential section of the city. Having first visited in 1998, I finally made a return visit in 2014. I was pleasantly surprised at how well Victory Field has held up. It is clear that the city and team take pride in making sure that the ballpark remains a top notch facility. In my travels, I have seen too many examples of newer parks that have not had the necessary upkeep (see Norfolk). But with Victory Field, you would have no idea that the ballpark is approaching it's 20th birthday.
- The downtown location makes for a great setting. The backdrop is that of the city skyline, which is highlighted by the Marriott building in left field and a large factory building in right field. Lucas Oil Stadium can also be seen from some angles within the ballpark. Previously, the RCA Dome dominated the backdrop, so it is good that it is no longer around.
- The full wraparound concourse is spacious and allows for plenty of places to take in the game from. There is also large grassy berms for those who prefer a more relaxing setting.
- The second level here allows for more seats around the infield than most AAA parks do. Many new parks these days have too many seats that are in the outfield and don't provide the greatest views of the field. I love that the architects of Victory Field decided to put in a second deck with regular seating.
- The concourses are clean, colorful, and contain banners which recognize the rich baseball history of Indianapolis.
- The center field gate, where most fans enter the ballpark, is attractive and fits in well with the surrounding buildings. It is also located very close to most of the parking garages (which charge $5 to park).
- The outfield concourse, dubbed "PNC Plaza", is a nice gathering area, but doesn't provide any views of the field and is mostly filled with games and other kid-related activities. The carnival style games seemed a bit tacky to me.
- Ushers are a bit too strict. For a park that is nearly twenty years old, it is odd to see the large number of ushers and them being so restrictive about where fans can go.
Victory Field is easily one of my favorite AAA ballparks. It is clean, it is comfortable, and the setting is wonderful. I never did see a game at Bush Stadium, but for the fans of Indianapolis, I would have have to think that Victory Field is a very worthy replacement.
- Good variety of concessions at reasonable prices. Besides the normal ballpark fare, some of the specialty items include Rib sandwiches, breaded tenderloin, quesadillas, burrito bowls, and specialty hot dogs.
- There is also a "Build a Burger" stand which allows fans to customize a burger, hot dog, or nachos to their liking.
- Monday games are "dollar days", which means hot dogs, peanuts, popcorn, and cracker jacks are all just $1. Quite a bargain, especially for the peanuts and cracker jacks.
- An area in right field known as "The Cove" offers a group seating as well as individual tickets for fans wanting a full service experience.
- One minor complaint with regards to the concessions - on nights with big crowds, more ice cream stands are needed. I've never seen such long lines for ice cream at a ballpark.