Call up your best buddy who’s heading off to boot camp, or your son who’s back from Iraq, and tell him you’d love to spend some quality time together this summer at historic Fenway Park in Boston. Juice up the deal by offering to pay for a pair of Red Sox tickets. Just be sure your soldier/sailor/airman/marine brings an active duty military ID so the two of you can score discounted tickets for $10 each. (Regular prices can be $50, $75, or much more.) Singing “Sweet Caroline” in the 8th inning — a Red Sox tradition — is that much sweeter when it costs less than three beers to get into the park.
Here’s the deal: At every regular season game, the Boston Red Sox set aside SRO (standing room only) tickets for active duty military personnel. The number of tickets varies, but it’s often around 200. Each serviceman or servicewoman can purchase a maximum of two tickets per game — one for them, one for you — at $10 each. It’s just one way the Red Sox say “thank you” to our military.
Here’s what you need to know before you head to the ballpark:
- Military SRO tickets go on sale two hours before game time. The ticket booth is at Gate B. Each person with an active duty military ID can buy two tickets. (Yes, they check IDs.)
- The military SRO line can be long. Or very short. It’s tough to predict. Early this 2010 season, my husband (who is active duty) and I headed to the park one weeknight to see the Red Sox versus the Yankees and found no one waiting in line. We walked right up to the SRO booth, less than an hour before game time, and scooped up two tickets. But on a Wednesday afternoon last July, a day blessed with blue skies and warm breezes, we arrived two hours before the ticket booth opened and four hours before game time. And before long, we were joined by about 150 fellow fans. Hey, sometimes you have to work for the cheap tickets.
- SRO means “standing room only.” That means you will be standing during the game. It should go without saying, but we’ll remind you anyway: Let comfort rule when choosing your shoes.
- Children under three years of age don’t need a ticket, and they don’t count toward the two-ticket limit.
- You must enter the ballpark immediately after purchasing tickets. An attendant stands close by to make sure you head directly into Fenway. That’s so you can’t resell these discounted tickets at a profit. (Not that you would think of doing such a thing.) Bottom line: If you want a sausage sandwich from a vendor outside the park, plan ahead.
If you’re in Beantown this summer and you snag a couple of SRO tickets, look around for Kyle and me. We’re usually near first base. Go Sox!