Citi Field Seating - The Coca-Cola Corner
When Matt Silverman, the author of “101 Things Mets Fans Should Know Or Do Before They Die” asked me what my favorite part of Citi Field was, the first thing that popped into my head was the view from what was then the Pepsi Porch, now the Coca-Cola Corner.
Citi Field’s Coca-Cola Corner is the pavilion under the classic Coca-Cola sign in right field, with five sections of seating and some sofas and cornhole games. It is the modern-day equivalent of inexpensive bleacher seats, sort of. The area is a standalone spot on the mezzanine (Excelsior) level; they are slightly more expensive than upper deck seats but still much cheaper than most of the buckets in the ballpark.
The seating there is based on old Tiger Stadium, with the Corner sections overhanging even the right field fence; perhaps in an effort to have more home runs land in the seating. The area is wide open and uncovered, which in right field means that it is the last place to see shade on a hot summer evening. It’s a good idea to bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.
The pavilion has its own concessions and restrooms; the stands don’t sell anything unusual up here. It’s the Coca-Cola Corner, so if you’d expect to get Coke products you won’t be disappointed.
But what’s striking, to this writer anyway, is that view. Of chop shops. Muffler mavens. Junkyards.
It is jolting, because you’ve spent all of this time walking around this magnificently designed ballpark. You’ve been bowled over by the Jackie Robinson Rotunda and the Mets Hall of Fame and the Shea Bridge. You’re looking at padded seats and the Audi Club and the sushi bar and you see that well-to-do people are coming here for a ballgame.
And then you look out from the Coca-Cola Corner and there is no doubt. You’re in Queens. Just directly outside this beautiful, welcoming facility is a hard, unforgiving city.
Other ballparks have views of landmarks, like the Roberto Clemente Bridge in Pittsburgh, the arch in St. Louis, the mountains in Denver. Most baseball homes are surrounded by taverns and eateries capitalizing on pre- and post-game business. Not here. Not in urban New York City. Here you see busted up cars on rooftops. Want something to eat? Go to Manhattan. But you can get a fender here if you need it.
The Coca-Cola Corner is a fun place to watch a ballgame, even if the seats are hot and far away from home plate. The upper level porch may have even been built to block the view of Queens beyond right field. But you can’t miss it from the pavilion.
The view from the Corner isn’t pretty or quirky. It’s big city reality. Unusual in ballparks these days. And that’s kinda what’s great about it.
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