If you are headed to Wrigley Field to see a Cubs game this summer, I strongly recommend skipping the ballpark and going to one of the rooftops around Wrigley. I mean, if you are a die-hard fan and love the ballpark experience and its history, go to the park. However, casual visitors like me could do without the cramped seating, long lines at the bathrooms, and super expensive food and drink.
For the past two years, my annual once-a-summer Cubs game has been at a Wrigley rooftop. For those of you unfamiliar, Wrigley rooftops are buildings that surround Wrigley Field that sell seating, providing rooftop views into the ballpark. Most rooftops now charge a flat rate per person which includes food, drinks, alcohol, rooftop seating, inside bar/lounge seating, private bathrooms, and more. It’s a different kind of experience, in that it’s much more comfortable and there is less stress and more fun. The food is fresh, cooked to order, and there are bars on most levels of the rooftops. TV screens inside play the Cubs game, as well as other sports programs. Usually radios are played around the outside seating area so hard-core fans don’t miss any of the play-by-play commentary.
Enjoying a rooftop experience obviously costs more, but for some, the comfort and amenities are worth it. Cubs tickets, purchased from their official website, cost around $30-$145 per person, depending on the seat selected. Rooftop costs can range from $65-$160 per person, depending on who they are playing and when. Remember, these rooftop prices also include unlimited food and drink, so depending on who you are, it might be a better deal.
One important thing to note – when you book your rooftop experience, make sure the rooftop has a complete view of the field. I know it seems obvious, but some views are obstructed around the ballpark. Wrigley Field has gotten new improvements over the years, and one of these includes new displays in the outfield. These large screens now block the view of some rooftops. It’s interesting to note that the rooftops that have obstructed views do not belong to the Cubs owners. (I won’t bore you with information, but let’s just say the fight between the rooftop owners and the Cubs organization has been going on for many years. Just recently, the Cubs owners have purchased 10 of the 16 rooftop buildings. All but one of these buildings have great views. Sports Corner rooftop at 3609 N. Sheffield has okay views and is not owned by the Cubs owners; however you can buy tickets for their rooftop and the Cubs owners’ rooftops at their website here.)
Being able to walk around, be comfortable, and have easy access to food, drink, and clean bathrooms really does make the experience better. Three rooftops on North Sheffield (3643, 3639, 3637) seem to have the best views that are completely unobstructed. I’ve personally had great experiences at 3639 N. Sheffield. Wrigley Rooftop’s website provides information on the rooftop views for each building.
Groupon offers Cubs rooftop tickets for a steal. They get your attention by offering an all-inclusive rooftop party during a Cubs game for $50. However, what they don’t tell you, or show you, is that your view of the field is limited. The new billboard/displays in the outfield now block all rooftop views of Wrigley except the rooftops that are owned by the Cubs owners. The views these other rooftops post on their websites can be very misleading so be sure to read the fine print. If you care at all about your view of the game and the playing field, visit Wrigley Rooftops and book a seat with a clear view.
Considering that the Cubs have 4-1 odds to win the World Series this year (according to some Vegas sports books), there might not be a better time to see the Cubbies win!
Happy Travels! Go Cubs go!