What can I write about Jordan’s Mini Met ballpark that hasn’t already been written? The picturesque little park, situated about 35 miles from Minneapolis is likely second only to Miesville in “have you ever been to _____” status among local seamheads.
And with good reason. The park is the kind of rare jewel that baseball fanatics traverse the plains, hills, and valleys of the midwest in desperate search of. A blissful combination of old-time baseball charm, quirky features, cheap beers, and postcard scenery, it’s been a fixture of the Minnesota baseball scene for decades. Google “jordan mini met” and you’ll find exhaustive coverage of the park on everything from the Star Tribune to Trip Advisor and beyond.
Let’s take a quick tour through the ballpark to check out some of what you’ll find:
√ Antique Wooden Grandstand? Check.
In fact, the site was originally used for the Scott County Fairgrounds, where the grandstand faced the oval track for horse races, explaining it’s rather unusual placement along the 3B line.
√ Hand-painted, manually operated scoreboard? Check.
Throughout the game, the board operator walks along a plank flipping numbers as teams collect hits, errors, and runs. Balls and strikes are displayed with green and yellow lights.
√ An old church steeple? Check.
You don’t have to go to Stearns County to mix your religions (though I recommend a pilgrimage there, as well).
√ Unique ballpark features? Check.
Few ballpark idiosyncrasies rival the weird kick-outs in the OF wall that surround the light standards. A+++ for unique aesthetics (most likely necessitated by adding lights after-the-fact with no room outside the park to put them).
√ Majestic views? They’ve got ’em.
The hill running along the 3B foul line is regularly covered with fans on lawnchairs and picnic blankets.. In fact, close personal friend of TBT Kevin Hoese can regularly be found at Jordan games with his dogs Lucie and Winston. Also, the bluffs framing the ballpark, and the whisper of the creek running along the park’s east side provide an enchanting ambiance during day or night games.
Okay — it’s not all perfect. The park has a couple, rather minor drawbacks:
- The seating behind home plate is a series of unattractive concrete steps with a couple lengths of obtrusive chain link fence in front. I get it — the grandstand is the star of the show, and the out-of-play territory over there is limited by the creek, bullpen, IF dirt piles, etc…but it feels a like a wasteland compared to the rest of the park.
- I have been to many games in Jordan and have yet to see the beautiful ticket booth put to use. Come on! Who do you want to pay your $3 to, someone sitting on a folding chair at the end of the driveway, or someone in this fantastic ticket booth?
Between the townball Jordan Brewers, high school, tournaments, playoffs, and playing co-host to the 2018 MBA State Tournament with Shakopee and New Prague, you’ll have about 17,000 opportunities to visit the Mini Met this summer. Jump on one, and have a pregame cold one at Moola’s. Tell them the Townball Tuesdays boys sent you.
Then pay them for the beers while they shrug their shoulders wondering who you’re talking about.
See you at the yards.