What to expect when entering Great American Ball Park on Opening Day

While it’s not quite like gaining access to an airport, getting into Great American Ball Park could take you several minutes during the 2014 season.

As in previous years, guests entering the Reds' stadium may be subject to random inspection by electronic wanding or physical means.

It’s a policy that’s being implemented league-wide by Major League Baseball.

MLB told its 30 teams they must use security screening for fans by 2015, either with hand-held metal detection or walk-through magnetometers. 

“This procedure, which results from MLB’s continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security to standardize security practices across the game, will be in addition to bag checks that are now uniform throughout MLB,” baseball spokesman Michael Teevan said.

PHOTOS: Cincinnati Reds Opening Day game

The Reds have not announced whether or not they plan to install stand-up, walk-through metal detectors or other scanning devices. Officials with the organization did not return comment on further security plans.

However, other teams across the league have already started using them.

In Seattle, the Mariners are requiring everyone entering Safeco Field to walk through metal detectors this season

The Red Sox, the Mets, the A's, the Pirates and the Giants were among the teams that experimented with screening at times last year after security gained more intense focus after the bombings at the Boston Marathon finish line.

The Reds organization says it was extra vigilant following the attacks even as they were conducting standard checks of handbags and purses. They also employed the services of a larger than normal number of uniformed police officers and county deputies, something that is expected to continue in 2014.

"While we won't comment specifically on security procedures at Great American Ball Park, we can assure our fans that their safety always has been and will be the number one priority of our staff and local law enforcement agencies," the organization said in a statement.

MLB seems pleased with the initial results of its security testing.

“We conducted testing of these measures at the All-Star game and at both World Series venues last year, and we were pleased that it was effective and received without issue from fans,” Teevan said.

Some security measures tightened up in 2013, but last season also saw the Reds adopt a re-entry policy that wasn't in place in previous years.

Guests can now re-enter Great American Ball Park at the gate located near the Tree Grove between Crosley Terrace and the Fan Zone on the west side of the stadium.

Fans who desire re-entry need to have their ticket and be ready to undergo the same search they endured when they were first admitted.

Keep in mind security personnel has the right to refuse entry to any spectator.

In addition to wanding, security staff will inspect guests’ carry-in items prior to entrance into the ballpark. The Reds' security policy also grants the staff permission to inspect the items of a person who's already inside.

While guests are allowed to bring in various personal items, objects larger than 16 inches by 16 inches by 8 inches are not permitted in the stadium, per MLB size requirements. This includes things like bags, backpacks, purses and coolers.

As long as they are conscious of its size, spectators can bring in soft-sided coolers. However, hard-sided coolers are strictly prohibited.

Soft drinks and bottled water are acceptable provided they’re in clear plastic bottles and the safety seal isn't broken. Anything that's already open will need to be thrown out before entering the park.

Wondering about beverages in glass bottles and cans? Maybe those oversized plastic or insulated foam cups/containers you get at restaurants or convenience stores? They can't be brought into the stadium.

Thinking about trying to sneak something in? Don't bother. Like all items, coolers are subject to inspection by security staff prior to admittance and at any time while inside GABP.

Also, just as a friendly reminder, alcoholic beverages cannot be brought into park. Don't worry, though, Great American Ball Park has a ton of great beer options this year .

Guests are welcome to bring cameras and video recorders into the ballpark for personal use provided game action is not recorded, as required by Major League Baseball.

Fans are requested to be respectful with their recording equipment and try not to obstruct others who are trying to enjoy the game. Being the person who stands up in aisles during innings or is blocking part of the concourse can get someone booted from the site.

Great American Ball Park is a county facility and it is illegal to carry a firearm, deadly weapon or dangerous ordinance in the property. Having a concealed weapon permit doesn't change that fact.

Only

off-duty law enforcement officers, retired law enforcement officers who are qualified under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act and licensed protection professionals with prior approval are permitted to have a concealed weapon on premises.

Anyone who is permitted to carry a concealed weapon to GABP needs to notify a police supervisor upon entering the venue so their identification and seat location can be verified and noted.

If a person needs help, they should contact the stadium's security staff.

Guests who have an issues that requires attention can text "REDS" and your issue to 90808. Security will reply and/or be dispatched to your area, if needed.

"We encourage all of our employees and fans to continue to focus on their surroundings and to notify our security staff if they feel the need to do so," the Reds organization wrote in a security release.

Gates open 90 minutes prior to game time.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments

or Subscribe now so you can share your opinion! It’s only a penny for a month trial.