View Full Version : Guide to Opening Day in Cincinnati

03-27-2011, 01:03 AM
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/85/208029956_09ec43a70f_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/woodmania/208029956/sizes/l/in/photostream/)

There have been a number of posts from people asking about tips for Opening Day in Cincinnati.

The epicenter for Opening Day festivities is Fountain Square (http://www.flickr.com/photos/90758220@N00/2702260764/). Events and rallies carry on throughout the day, from 9 AM to 8 PM.
Location: Fifth and Vine Streets.

Weather ranges from the 30s to the 70s this time of year in Cincinnati. It's likely to be on the cool side this year, perhaps in the low 40s. Downtown can be windy, so I'd advise you to bring extra layers of clothing and gloves.

Unique Cincinnati businesses:

* Arnolds

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5254/5493485326_4f9ecd608f_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/lizeffler/5493485326/)

An historic, authentic Cincinnati tavern.

Location: 8th Street near Sycamore
Website: arnoldsbarandgrill.com (http://www.arnoldsbarandgrill.com/)

* Skyline Chili


Expect something different than Texas-style chili. Try the three-way, but not if you have a timid stomach.

Location: 4th and Sycamore
2 blocks from the stadium
Website: skylinechili.com (http://www.skylinechili.com/)

* Graeter's Ice Cream


Famous for Black Raspberry Chip. Also has baked goods and coffee.

Location: On the square near 5th and Walnut.
Website: graeters.com (http://graeters.com/)

There are a bunch of places clustered from Fountain Square to the north, along 6th Street and Walnut. Including:


Cadillac Ranch

The Rock Bottom Brewery
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4108/5073754922_1d733ac360_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/52095034@N02/5073754922/)
Location: On the Square, north of the fountain
Website: http://www.rockbottom.com/cincinnati

Mynt Martini on Fountain Square

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2797/4435359607_000cacb45d_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thaddfiala/4435359607/)

Website: myntcincinnati.com (http://www.myntcincinnati.com/)


Findlay Market
- The staging area for the parade is at this historic market. Last year, Johnny Bench and Bronson Arroyo were hanging out there, this year Joe Morgan will be the Grand Marshall of the parade.

The parade starts to the north of Downtown in Over-the-Rhine (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cincinnati/sets/72157603734700795/).

If you want to go to Findlay Market, the best place to park is around Central Parkway and Findlay Street. NOTE: if you're new to Cincy, then Fountain Square is a much easier option. Over-the-Rhine is for the adventurous and experienced in Cincinnati who know there way around.


http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4012/4495301995_f729a7a43c_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cincytwboy/4495301995/)

The best place to view the parade is along Fifth Street between Race and Broadway.

Parking is tight and garage owners jack up their prices. If you're in a hotel it's best to walk around downtown. If you're driving to the game, arrive early. You can park for free in some areas outside of Downtown Cincinnati.

Parking in Kentucky is a good option on a warm day.

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2100/1541146647_29eee64460_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/sportrait/1541146647/)

Covington has a handful of places such as Molly Malone's (http://covington.mollymalonesirishpub.com/) and a few spots on Greenup Street near Third. Riverside Drive is a pleasant location to take photos of the Ballpark on a nice day. The Main Strasse District (http://www.mainstrasse.org/) is an interesting area, renovated to look like an Old World German village. It's a good place to go at night, about 1.5 miles from the stadium, best to drive.

Newport-on-the-Levee (http://www.newportonthelevee.com/directory/) is busy on gamedays. It's a close hop across the bridge from the stadium.

A walk over the Ohio River from Kentucky is great on a Summer Day. During this time of year, I think the best place is Downtown Cincinnati for Opening Day festivities.

Newport also has riverfront restaurants, and the Hofbrauhaus, an authentic German Beer Hall.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3069/3007271070_0772d93859_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/jennrationdesign/3007271070/)

If you have time to go farther afield:

The Mt. Adams neighborhood is a must-see if you're in town for a couple of days. St. Gregory Street is in the heart of the neighborhood:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3042/2922326540_ebe6e12b8a_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thaddfiala/2922326540/)

Carew Tower:
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4058/4492310234_3431529349_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thehallspace/4492310234/)
This is a very interesting place. If the observation deck is open, you can see the city from 500 feet up.
Info (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carew_Tower)

Union Terminal:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3034/2651716968_ed8a5b14ec_m.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dania_h/2651716968/)

If you're going to be in town for a couple of days, I'd recommend checking out the Union Terminal. An art deco masterpiece, this building holds the Omnimax Theater and multiple museums.


03-27-2011, 01:28 AM
Great post Cincinnatian!

As a native Cincinnatian, I'd say you've nailed a good portion of the must sees around the downtown area. I'm sure that post took awhile, and anyone not familiar with Opening Day in Cincinnati should be very appreciative.

03-27-2011, 01:36 AM

I forget to post the Hofbrauhaus website: http://www.hofbrauhausnewport.com (http://www.hofbrauhausnewport.com/)

They have large portions for those with a healthy appetite.

Location: 3rd and Saratoga Street
Newport, KY

03-27-2011, 11:21 AM
I like how on the Rock Bottom Brewery picture, one guy is much taller than everyone else, and is wearing white, not red.

03-27-2011, 11:45 AM

I forget to post the Hofbrauhaus website: http://www.hofbrauhausnewport.com (http://www.hofbrauhausnewport.com/)

They have large portions for those with a healthy appetite.

Location: 3rd and Saratoga Street
Newport, KY


Liters of Dunkel along with tons of German food. I loved this place when I came to visit.

03-28-2011, 10:25 AM
Ugh, I hate to be mean, but that group of "cheerleaders" is the not-so-prettiest group I have ever seen, worse then dook cheerleaders even. Are they at games, what do they do/who are they?

03-28-2011, 11:21 AM
The photographer described them as from a "local high school." They look pretty good to me, especially for a group of young ladies in the rain.

03-28-2011, 03:16 PM
Willy's Sports Bar in Covington and Molly Malone's in Covington offer shuttle service to and from the game.

Jefferson Hall at Newport on the Levee has the nicest patio in the city overlooking downtown and they have local cover band The Rusty Griswold's playing immediately after the game.

The Holy Grail is now open directly across from the stadium on Main St. It will be THE sports bar for Reds fans. They have over 30 televisions and garage door style walls facing the street to make it open air when the weather is nice, like many of the bars in Wrigleyville.

I'd also recommend O'Malley's in the Alley located between Vine and Race streets, Head First Sports Cafe on 3rd St, and Tina's on the corner of 4th and Central. They're locally owned bars with some character. If you like corporate owned cookie cutter schlock then feel free to head to Cadillac Ranch or Mynt Martini.

The In Between Tavern on 3rd St sucks. Go there if you want to pay stadium prices for warm beer.

edited to add: I didn't mean to offend, Cincinnatian should be commended for putting a good list together.

XU Lou
03-29-2011, 11:09 AM
Cincinnatian, great post! And my wife calls me a "tour guide". I am humbled.

Along these lines, does anyone know if the gates will open earlier than the normal 90 minutes? If not, what is the best strategy to obtain a table in the Machine Room?

Many thanks.

03-29-2011, 05:05 PM
Does the parade go all the way to the stadium?

03-29-2011, 06:46 PM
The parade ends at Fifth and Sycamore streets between the Taft Theatre and Proctor & Gamble headquarters. When Marge Schott was the owner, part of the parade found its way onto the field at Riverfront Stadium.


The most popular place to view the parade is near Fountain Square on Fifth Street:

03-29-2011, 07:02 PM
does anyone know if the gates will open earlier than the normal 90 minutes? If not, what is the best strategy to obtain a table in the Machine Room?

Many thanks.

According to MLB.com (http://ramsey.mlblogs.com/2011/03/24/opening-day-news-and-reds-make-a-deal/), gates open at 11:40 AM.


The Reds.com (http://cincinnati.reds.mlb.com/cin/ballpark/machine_room.jsp) page for the Machine Room says:

The host staff seats all tables inside and outside. Please go to the host desk near the front door to be seated.

Patio Dining:
Patio dining is on a first-come, first-served basis. Maximum seating is 4 per table.

Inside Dining:
No reservations are taken for inside seating. Parties of 6 or more will have an 18% gratuity added to the final bill.

Beer Garden:
The Beer Garden is available for dining and will be treated as inside dining by the host stand.


The website indicates that the Machine Room opens three hours prior to game time, which would be 11:10 AM on Opening Day. They further state:

Fans who wish to enjoy the Machine Room on game days must have a ticket to the game.

For more information, call (513) 765-7606
For information about private parties, call (513) 765-7591

04-27-2011, 12:31 AM
Where is the best place to go to after the game where the Reds players hang out after the games especially after a Saturday late Afternoon Game that takes place on May 14.

Reason is that I am taking my Nieces to the game and they wanted to the sports bars to hang out and have fun at and they are over 21 yrs of age.

Thanks in advance