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Touring America’s newest baseball parks

Wherever you travel this summer, if you’re a baseball fan, you’ll be tempted to check out the local ballpark. If you’re near one of the following new – and spectacular – ballparks, make it a point to visit.Citi Field in Queens, N.Y., is the new home of the Mets. The ballpark’s overarching steel bridge motif symbolizes New York City’s 2,000-plus bridges and the team’s connection to all five of New York’s boroughs. The front entrance is a rotunda that honors Brooklyn Dodgers legend Jackie Robinson. More than 40 percent of the park’s 42,000 seats are on the lowest level, bringing more fans closer to the action than they could be in the old Shea Stadium. There’s also an incredible array of food to enjoy, including gourmet hamburgers and fries.The Minnesota Twins have played in six ballparks, but Target Field in downtown Minneapolis is the first built specifically for the team. The stadium’s gates are numbered after retired numbers worn by Twins players, including Kent Hrbek, Rod Carew and Kirby Puckett. Concessions include Minnesota favorites like walleye and Juicy Lucy cheeseburgers, as well as some of the famous “on a stick” foods served at the Minnesota State Fair. Target Field is an open-air stadium, but the heated viewing areas and heated field will help the players and fans keep warm if the weather turns chilly.Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., home of the Washington Nationals, is the first certified “green” major professional sports stadium in the U.S., which means it meets rigorous standards for resource conservation. Fans who conserve resources by riding their bikes to the game enjoy free valet bike parking, too. The stadium’s modern design includes three levels of upscale club seating, including the Stars & Stripes Club. This park has earned great reviews for its seating, with ample leg room and excellent sight lines.Ask your travel professional to help you work a visit to a major league ballpark into your summer vacation itinerary.

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