Growing a unique ballpark experience in Normal

By Chad Weber

July 5, 2013 Updated Jul 8, 2013 at 11:37 AM CDT

NORMAL, Ill. -- The crack of the bat and smell of the grill are all part of the ballpark experience but in Normal, they are striving for more than just the normal.

"When you buy a Cornbelters ticket, you're not a ticket number in a seat," said General Manager Kyle Kreger.

It is the fourth year for the Normal Cornbelters, a non-affiliated minor league team and General Manager Kyle Kreger said just like the corn, interest is growing.

"For a lot of fans it's a social gathering here at the park," said Kreger. "They want to watch competitive baseball but at the same time they want to come out and have a good time with their family and their friends."

If you're willing to shell out a little extra, the "Big League Scouts Seats" offer a unique experience.

"You have waiter and waitress service all game long with an all you can eat and drink menu," said Kreger.

"It's great," said Joe Calendo, attending the game with his family. "You can't beat it for the price. The only time you really gotta get up is to use the restroom if you want to."

Then there's the corn theme. You see it from the moment you arrive at the stadium, to when you meet Corny, the mascot.

"Everything you see around here revolves around corn," said Kreger. "You got corn in the outfield. We have corn all around the ballpark."

Corn is such a big part of the theme here at the ballpark, it's even on the menu. Corn on the cob is only $1.

It's all part of the affordable family fun the folks at the ballpark said is what they strive to deliver.

"We want you to feel valued," said Kreger. "We appreciate your support and thank you for coming out to the ballpark."