MGM Park opens gates, but not for baseball - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

MGM Park opens gates, but not for baseball

There were plenty of inflatables for the kids. (Photo source: WLOX) There were plenty of inflatables for the kids. (Photo source: WLOX)
The field was gated off for the play area. (Photo source: WLOX) The field was gated off for the play area. (Photo source: WLOX)
A little girl gets her face painted with patriotic colors. (Photo source: WLOX) A little girl gets her face painted with patriotic colors. (Photo source: WLOX)
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

For the first time since MGM Park opened, the stadium saw a crowd that wasn't there to cheer on the Shuckers baseball team. Saturday's all-day event offered families a different way to celebrate the 4th of July. 

“It was fun. I jumped on there, and I went down that,” said one little girl.

Shuckers' co-owner Tim Bennett, along with many other sponsors, organized the Independence Day celebration. Bennett said he faced some challenges getting everything together the day after a home game.

"Even though we weren't prepared as we like to be, we didn't want to let the opportunity pass by for people that would be downtown to come and see the beautiful MGM Park," said Bennett.

Bennett knows not everyone likes baseball, so this is just the first of many non-sporting events that will take place at the park.

"I think it's amazing for the community. It gives the community something to do, not only the casinos. It gives the tourists something to do, so I think it's awesome," said George Barkman.

Barkman, who is retired military, said he makes the 4th of July all about family, and the park event is a great way to do just that.

"We just recently moved here and we got family here from New York, Boston, everywhere. So, it was just something to bring the kids out to because we've done a lot of adult stuff this week, so it's time to let the kids have their fun," said Barkman.

The celebration continued into the night with a fireworks show.

Copyright 2015 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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