- Bart Wilhelm
Hyde Stadium - Pierre Trappers
Photos by Bart Wilhelm, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.29
Hyde Stadium Ree St. and E. Capitol Ave Pierre, SD 57501
Pierre Trappers website Hyde Stadium website
Year Opened: 1935 Capacity: 1,500
Trappers in Pierre
Built in 1935 as part of the New Deal’s Federal Emergency Relief Administration, Hyde Stadium has been housing Legion baseball in South Dakota’s capital city for 85 years. The Pierre Cowboys from the independent summer collegiate Basin League also called the park home in the 1950’s and 60’s. In 2018, the summer collegiate Expedition League was created and the Pierre Trappers became one of the league’s eight inaugural teams.
Food & Beverage 4
The food and beverage options at Hyde Stadium are quite plentiful and the prices are very reasonable for a ballgame. Options include nachos/super nachos ($3/$6), Walking Tacos ($6), Pulled Pork ($5), Standard Hot Dog ($2.50), and a Pizza Soft Pretzel with Cheese or a King Soft Pretzel with Cheese ($4/$3). Also, new in 2020 is their signature “Trapper Dog” ($5). This is a hot dog with pulled pork and nacho cheese on it. As it was Opening Night, they were hyping the Trapper Dog and I noticed several people trying them. Personally, I thought it was delicious. Drinks include Pepsi products, Gatorade, Lemonade, and Iced Tea (all $3) and Bottled Water for $2. Beer selection is moderate. Cans of Coors Light, Budweiser, and Blue Moon are $5 and two different kinds of Deschutes IPAs are available for $6 (19.2 ounces). If a predetermined “beer batter” strikes out, all beers are $1 off for the rest of the inning. There is one permanent concession stand located just to the first base side of home plate. Beer is sold at mobile carts down both baselines. The lines are constant, but they seem to move quite well.
Seating at Hyde Stadium is a bit odd. There are several hundred fixed seats which sell for $10. Directly behind home plate, there is a covered “auditorium-style” section called the “Trapper’s Post” that sells for only $6. These seats, though, are simply concrete, but you can always bring a padded seat cover, and this section is mostly shaded. You also get the most direct view of the entire field. The earliest shade of the evening goes to the seats on the third base side which are closest to home plate. The covering from the Trapper’s Post causes shade right from the time the gates open. There are grassy areas down both lines available for $5, but warning, this is where all the kids run around and play and scream. Cheap ticket, but lots of interruptions. A small electronic scoreboard is in right center field. No frills, no videos. Also no player names, and unfortunately, there are no roster sheets available. I had to go to the Pointstreak website to keep up with the players. There are a few in-between inning promotions like the typical dizzy bat race, but nothing that really stands out as extraordinary. Kids are allowed to help sing the 7th inning stretch, but they actually did the stretch BEFORE the 7th inning. I later asked the promo team if that was a normal occurrence in Pierre. One of the girls bowed her head and said “No, I screwed up.” At least they realized their mistake.
Hyde Stadium is located literally across the street from the front entrance of the State Capitol Building. It makes it quite easy to find. There is an adjacent jogging trail that will take you down to the Missouri River. Downtown is about a half mile away. The Historic Pierre Street Association has several quaint little shops and the sidewalks are tree-lined and well shaded. Richie Z’S Brickhouse BBQ and Grill is a well-attended barbeque restaurant in the area. The Cattleman’s Club Steakhouse has the best reviews of any of the local restaurants. For a town that only has about 13,000 people, there seems to be quite a few varied options for any taste. There is also plenty of the usual fast food restaurants in the area including my personal favorite, Taco John’s.
My trip was Opening Night for the Trappers, and with the COVID-19 pandemic going on, people were hungry to see a ballgame. Attendance was limited to about 600 (normal max is over a thousand if they pack them in on the lawns), and the game was a sell-out. The fans seem to be mostly attentive to the game. In the 7th inning, fans started chanting for local standout, Peyton Zabel, to come in to pitch. In the 8th, when he was brought into the game, the place got LOUD. As he struck out all five batters he faced with his 100mph fastball, the place got louder. Zabel is from Pierre, and everyone seemed to know him.
Pierre is the second-smallest US Capital city and is one of only four that is not serviced by the Eisenhower Interstate System (I won a trivia contest knowing that fact so I like to throw it out there when I can). The closest freeway is I-90, which is 35 miles south of the city. That being said, US 83 goes right through town and is a divided highway once you get south of the city. Going north, there are only very small towns until you get to Bismarck, North Dakota. The park itself is very easy to find as it is across the street from the State Capitol building. The physical address is 601 E Capitol Ave. While there is no actual parking lot, there is plenty of free street parking nearby. Getting in and out is very easy. There is one gate to get in the park located right behind home plate. Pierre’s airport is only a regional airport, so if you’re looking to fly in, you’re probably not getting a direct flight.
Return on Investment 4
This is a very cost-friendly ballpark experience. I paid $5 for a ticket to get in the door. Seats are $6-$10 (there is also a row right by the netting behind home plate for $15). Food is well-priced. I can’t imagine getting a 19.2 ounce can of Deschutes IPA for less than the $6 they charge ($5 when the beer batter strikes out). Parking is free.
There isn’t a whole of “extras” available for the ballpark, but I’ll give them one point for the very informative stadium statue/plaque which provides a lot of historical information. I’ll also give another point to the very friendly staff. The GM of the team introduced himself to me as I walked in the door. He had seen me earlier in the week at two Trappers road games. Plus every employee I interacted with seems to be in good spirits. Everyone is happy to finally be around baseball again.
Pierre is an interesting town to visit. You literally don’t see the city until you’re there. It’s a small town but being the state capital makes it an important city. Hyde Park has been part of the city for 85 years, and with recent renovations to get it ready for the Trappers, I see no reason why it can’t be here for another 85. The city is a little off the beaten path, but I’d recommend making the trip.