Want to go to a baseball game in your pajamas? Then head to Toronto! The Blue Jays stadium has a Marriott hotel attached so you can watch the game from the comfort of your bed. Or, go to the kid-friendly Rogers Centre for a few innings and then head back for room service. It’s a really unique thing to do when visiting Ontario’s capital city.
Are you visiting Canada and hoping to catch a few innings of Toronto Blue Jays baseball? Need a game plan for game day? Here’s what you need to know including info about the fab views from the stadium hotel, the famous Canadian food offered at the ballpark and how to keep your kids entertained between home runs.
Toronto Blue Jays Stadium: Visiting the Rogers Centre with Kids
This mom loves checklists in all forms. And…when you can combine checklists with vacations, what could be better? So when I found out there was a Major League Baseball stadium passport, I just knew that was for our family.
In essence this book is just a fancy, leather bound to-do list, detailing all of the Major League Baseball ballparks in America, but it has created a fun travel itinerary for our family that we have been working through since 2014.
Being diehard Philadelphia Phillies fans, our first love will always be Citizens Bank Park, but on a recent trip to the Rogers Center (or Centre for my friends in the North) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, we now have a new appreciation for the home of the Blue Jays!
Arriving in Downtown Toronto
Located at 1 Blue Jays Way, the Rogers Centre is a stone’s throw from Toronto Inner Harbour and other popular tourist spots like the Hockey Hall of Fame. In our travels we have noticed that some ballparks serve as a stand-alone attraction (Milwaukee, I’m looking at YOU) but for the Blue Jays, they are in the heart of it all!
If you’re coming from the States, this MLB club is only about two hours (driving) from the New York border or an easy train ride into Union Station.
Walking around the grounds of the former Skydome, we found the atmosphere to be safe, well-marked and easy to navigate. We made it from the front entrance of the Rogers Centre to the CN tower in about five minutes with two little boys in tow.
SheBuysTravel Tip: Even if you are only headed to Toronto for game day, allow yourself some extra time before the first pitch for just wandering around the area and exploring the waterfront. In good weather, Toronto is great for strolling and stretching your legs before the game!
Staying Overnight in Toronto
Our trip to the Rogers Centre began a day before we actually had tickets to the game.
We stayed at the Toronto Marriott City Centre Hotel adjacent to the Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays game was the seventh MLB stop for our family on our baseball stadium tour, but our first time staying in a hotel actually connected to a stadium.
If you are a baseball-loving family like mine, this hotel is a must-do. I can’t overstate the ease of walking less than five minutes back to your hotel room with tired kids at the end of a game.
While the price reflected the location, we felt that it was worth the upcharge for the view from our room. On the first night of our Toronto stay, we didn’t have baseball tickets, but were still able to watch the game from the comfort of our hotel room, windows open and all.
SheBuysTravel Tip: If you are particular about where you sit in the ballpark, consider buying your tickets online via the Blue Jays site, Ticketmaster or other online vendor. If we had our hearts set on sitting behind home plate, but waited to purchase seats until the day of, we would have been disappointed.
More About the Toronto Marriott City Centre Hotel
This hotel in downtown Toronto also has a bar downstairs and an indoor pool. While not a large pool, swimming always lets my little guys burn off some energy before being asked to sit still!
The other bonus of this hotel was its general location in the city of Toronto. From our hotel we were able to walk to the waterfront, the Hockey Hall of Fame and the CN Tower. It was also a less than 15-minute drive to Casa Loma, Toronto’s Castle. Read more about our trip to Casa Loma.
SheBuysTravel Tip: If your budget allows you to check in to this hotel, consider picking up food to eat in your room. We walked to Wahlburger from our hotel and ordered take-out. The boys loved the novelty of watching the game in their pajamas while eating burgers! AND… while we did purchase tickets for the next evening, we felt like we got a “free” night of baseball.
Buying Peanuts and Crackerjack: Eating Around the Rogers Centre
Like most other Major League Ball clubs, you’ll find hot dogs, pizza, burgers and the like. The Rogers Centre is no different, with a good selection of offerings.
On our trip, we adopted the philosophy of “when in Rome” and tried different orders of poutine! While my eight-year-old tends to be less interested in trying new things, the other family members loved the poutine. For those unfamiliar, poutine is a Canadian staple consisting of French fries topped with cheese curd and brown gravy. As you can imagine, there are multiple variations, but when I picture poutine I think of the original!
Another option if you’re on a budget is to bring in your own food (not including alcohol or glass bottles), which is allowed by the Rogers Centre. While we didn’t bring our own food, we did bring in our own waters, which is easier on the wallet!
SheBuysTravel Tip: On our very first ballpark excursion, our kids wanted ice cream. We decided then to go ahead and upcharge to the plastic helmet ice creams since they are a souvenir and sweet treat all in one. Wash them out in the bathroom sink and start your collection! We now have a shelf of eight mini helmets and it’s fun to reminisce about the different stadiums when we look at them.
Kid Friendly Activities Inside the Ballpark
One thing we have learned is that child-friendly offerings will vary greatly from stadium to stadium. We were pleased with the all there was to do for kids at the home of the Toronto Blue Jays.
My six-year-old’s favorite activity at the Blue Jays’ stadium was the create-your-own button station. Free of charge, there was a kids’ area with coloring pages and blank buttons that were able to be customized. Both of our sons, ages six and eight, loved picking out their supplies, creating and then wearing their button all night.
Ace, the official Blue Jays’ mascot, was also available to meet. My kids love characters, so this was another great add-on for us while enjoying this ballpark.
SheBuysTravel Tip: Before finding your seats, take a full lap around the main concourse to see what you want to do first. It always helps us to get a game plan for the game! We don’t like to do everything at the beginning and then expect our kids to sit still for nine innings, so we talk about when we’ll take breaks and what we’ll do.
The Seventh Inning Stretch: More About the Rogers Centre
Having visited other ballparks around the country, it’s always fun for my family to learn the history of each and compare them.
For example, the Rogers Centre is not only home to the Toronto Blue Jays, but hosts concerts too! Luckily this stadium, formerly known as the Skydome, has a retractable roof for those less-than-perfect Toronto springs.
It was recently announced that, instead of demolishing the Rogers Centre and building a new stadium, the owners are planning a $200 million renovation.
The Final Out
Overall, my family loved our Toronto vacation and thoroughly enjoyed watching the Blue Jays under the dome! This stadium was clean, easy to navigate and offered kid-focused activities, which for my family is always a plus.
If you have a baseball-loving crew or you’re just planning a trip to the greater Toronto area, consider adding a game to your itinerary.
Not headed to Toronto but eager to check out another baseball stadium? Make sure to read all about these other SheBuysTravel experiences at different ballparks around the country: