Make a day of your trip to the ballpark. Here's everything you need to know about the Mets' stadium and the surrounding area.
1/24Mr. Met posing with Citi Field from the Panorama
2/24Citi Field on the Panorama at the Queens Museum of Art
3/24The Panorama at the Queens Museum of Art
18/24Carmelitas Photo by Kyle Garson
19/24Carmelitas Photo by Kyle Garson
20/24New York Hall of Science
21/24Pudu deer at the Queens Zoo
22/24Los Potrillos Photo by Kyle Garson
23/24Los Potrillos Photo by Kyle Garson
24/24Unisphere at Flushing Meadows--Corona Park
By Josh Frank|
All about Citi Field: Whether you're at the concession stands or in your seats, the three-year-old stadium's wide-open design offers a good view of the field from any angle. You can even scope the pitchers warming up in their respective bullpens, and the center-field region is adorned with a mini Hell Gate Bridge. The Amazin's didn't make many off-season moves, but the team may benefit from one change: the new, smaller dimensions of the stadium's outfield, which will ideally send a few more home runs into the stands. For grub, hit up the Shake Shack, barbecue joint Blue Smoke, Box Frites, a taqueria or—bring on the sigh of relief—the Budweiser beer garden.
While you're in the neighborhood...
See world-famous art "What we're doing is at the forefront of a lot of museums," says Tom Finkelpearl, executive director at the Queens Museum of Art. "It takes this symbolic transition to make a change in people's minds." When visiting the QMA, be sure to check out its Panorama of the City of New York, a 9,335-square-foot replica of the five boroughs, recently updated to include the new stadium. (The piece's miniature version of Shea Stadium can now be seen at the Mets Museum at Citi Field.) Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, Queens (718-592-9700, queensmuseum.org). Wed–Sun noon–6pm; suggested donation $2.50–$5.
Enjoy a pregame picnic Only a stone's throw from Citi Field sits beautiful Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, a vast expanse of greenery and home to a lingering wealth of monuments from the 1964 World's Fair. The most recognizable is the 120-foot-tall Unisphere, a gargantuan stainless steel globe clocking in at a whopping 700,000 pounds. The grass surrounding the relic is perfect for pregame picnicking, discreet boozing and drunken athletics. Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, Queens (nycgovparks.org)
Practice your golf swing If we cloned Bill Nye and Tiger Woods into one superbeing, his elected chill-out spot would probably be the New York Hall of Science, which features the family-friendly Rocket Park putt-putt range. The nine-hole course demonstrates the science of spaceflight; to wit, one hole is a model Earth. After you're done putting your way through space, wind up your pitcher's arm at NYSCI's "Sports Challenge"; here you can determine just how fast you're throwing tennis balls, softballs and baseballs. 47-01 111th St between 46th and 47th Aves, Corona, Queens (718-699-0005, nysci.org). Mon–Thu 9:30am–2pm; Fri 9:30am–5pm; Sat, Sun 10am–6pm; $8–$11.
Hang with mountain lions Former New Yorker Paul Simon once sang, "It's all happening at the zoo." If he was talking about the Queens Zoo, dude may've been onto something. Little rascals can chill with some of Queens' coolest residents, many of which can't be found at other city zoos—mountain lions, coyotes and pronghorn antelope among them. Even more impressive (assuming you're over the age of eight) is the zoo's Buckminster Fuller–designed bird-watching facility. 53-51 111th St between 53rd and 54th Aves, Flushing, Queens (718-271-1500, queenszoo.com). Mon–Fri 10am–5pm; Sat, Sun 10am–5:30pm. $5–$8.
Drown your sorrows—joys, too! Let's say the Mets lost. (Just being realistic here...) Drown your sorrows at Roosevelt Sports Bar, about a 12-minute walk east of the stadium. If there's anything that'll cheer up a depressed Mets fan, it's free beer: The bar offer a generous buyback around every third drink. With specials like these, you'll forget your favorite team blew it—and quite possibly that you were at the game in the first place. 133-45 Roosevelt Ave between College Point Blvd and Prince St, Flushing, Queens (718-463-2313, rooseveltsportsbar.com). Daily 11am–4am.
Get tanked with Mets players Known by locals as the unofficial hang spot for Mets A-listers, Pine Restaurant is the place to be before and after a game. "You never know who is going to show up," says manager Eddie Facenda of the Italian-resto-cum-Mets-themed-sports-bar. "One time, I'm sitting here and Carlos Delgado walks in!" If you're going to eat with the greats, save your appetite: The portions at Pine are famously huge and the brews ridiculously cheap ($4–$6). 37-10 114th St at 37th Ave, Corona, Queens (718-672-1200). Daily 6:30am–1am.