The Frisco RoughRiders have been the top-drawing Double-A franchise for the past 13 years. A new lazy river that the team is building should solidify that status for years to come.
The team confirmed Thursday its plans to build a 12,000-square-foot hospitality space past the outfield wall that will include a 175-foot-long lazy river with two 8-foot waterfalls. The water drops off the edge 131 feet into a reservoir between the structure and the outfield wall.
The team's new owner, Chuck Greenberg, dreamed up the idea; he owns two other minor league teams and used to be managing partner and CEO of the parent club, the Texas Rangers. Greenberg, who bought the team in August 2014, will now have put in $7.5 million in improvements to the ballpark.
"We've been the top-drawing franchise, but we saw that it was slowly declining by 5 or 6 percent each year," Greenberg said. "The Choctaw Lazy River will be a great signature piece for us."
There are other water structures in sports, but they won't compare to what is in Frisco, which is located 28 miles north of downtown Dallas. Greenberg says the lazy river is eight times the size of the Arizona Diamondbacks' pool and nine times the size of what the Jacksonville Jaguars offer.
The lazy river won't be open to everyone. First dibs will go to groups of 200 who can buy out the river and the rest of the hospitality space, which will include food and non-alcoholic drinks. Groups of 50 and 25, depending on the availability, also will have the option of watching the game from that area.
Thursday is the only day of the week on which individual tickets will be sold.
"It's our Thirsty Thursdays, so we will be targeting singles and millennials," Greenberg said. The individual ticket will cost $39 and will come with food and drinks. Beers will be available for $1 and $2, depending on quality.
The team has not yet decided how much it will charge to use the attraction on off days, but it plans to separately market it as a destination even without baseball.