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Target Field: My New Sanctuary?

By Craig Tacheny

It's like walking into a cathedral ... It reminds me that what I do in the world is a valuable and important thing.” - Mary Gordon, American author

I don’t go to church, but last Sunday I, along with hundreds of like-minded people, congregated in a large limestone building, the architecture of which was quite church-like, designed to inspire all who enter to something higher.

The Cathedral of St. Paul? No. The Basilica of St. Mary? No. The place to which I refer is none other than the baseball’s newest stadium: Target Field.

A friend of mine with season tickets had an extra pass to the open house and he offered it to me. I snatched them up without a thought. I won’t make it to many games this year - it’s not financially viable right now - and wanted a chance to see Target Field up close and on my terms, without a crowd of 40,000 in the way. So I made plans to be there at 9:00 Sunday morning.

As my train crossed Hennepin Avenue, the huge “Target Field” (Has anyone else noticed they’re using the same font as Chipotle?) sign loomed large over The Loon Cafe on First Avenue. Seeing that sign made me realize that Target Field was finally more than just something my friends and I discussed with excitement or heard about on radio adverts. It was real now, and there was no going back.

When I got inside one word resonated through my head over and over: awesome. The enormous, wide-open concourse with views of the field is awesome. The giant, crystal clear video board (with Game 163 playing on a loop) is awesome. The bathrooms equipped with stalls rather than troughs are awesome.

The field being lit by the brilliant morning sun rather than some lightbulbs was double awesome.

I did my best to take in the stadium from every conceivable angle. The view of the field from behind home plate is so beautiful it could inspire poets, the seats down the right field line were surprisingly good and even the upper deck areas give ample view of the entire field. Simply put, the place freaking rocks.

My inner five-year-old compelled me to climb to what I thought was the farthest seat from home plate and check out the view from there. It wasn’t bad. I strolled through The Metropolitan Club as well. Very posh.

On the wall outside the Herb Carneal Pressbox is an arrangement of famous game calls by Carneal and other major league broadcasters. Throughout the stadium you’ll find large photos depicting famous scenes and players from Twins history - like the baseball stations of the cross or something. Very cool.

All in all, Target Field is a palace. Fantastic food and beer selection, LCD TVs everywhere, the Budweiser Party Deck. I can’t say enough about how happy I am that the Twins have finally decided to join the major leagues by getting a real, modern ballpark.

Sure tickets cost more this year and I won’t make it to 15 home games like I did when they played at the Dome, but let’s be honest, the Dome sucked. It was like an ugly dog: we only loved it because it was ours.

What we have now -- Target Field -- is something special and as much as we (supposedly) loved the Dome, we’re going to forget all about it in about two months. All the new place needs now is a cool nickname. The Targe? I don’t know. It’s a start.

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