The Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (Class AA; Southern League) have revealed that a recently-renovated suite-level lounge will be named The Wheelhouse. The Wheelhouse, which received its name from a poll of season ticket holders and sponsors, will also have a new menu in 2017.
“The Wheelhouse” name was submitted by Kurt Wullenweber of Jacksonville, a ticket plan holder for several seasons, who will receive two free 2017 season tickets and credit to use for food and beverage in The Wheelhouse this season.
Explaining his idea for the name, Wullenweber said, “The skipper always watches the catch from the wheelhouse.”
The only area on the suite level open to all fans, The Wheelhouse gives fans a unique observation-deck view from behind home plate, much like a captain in a ship wheelhouse would overlook a vessel. In addition, as a pitch thrown into a batter’s “wheelhouse” often produces the most spectacular hits, The Wheelhouse serves fans a home run experience with a full bar, unique menu and seating that looks toward downtown Jacksonville and the St. Johns River as the sun sets each night.
Beginning this season, The Wheelhouse menu will include Shrimp-themed items, such as Jumbo-laya, Boom Boom Shrimp, Peel-and-Eat Shrimp and Shrimp Tacos, as well as classic dishes such as pizza slices, pork and slaw dogs, cookies and ice cream. The new Chef’s Table will also serve premium items, rotating in a buffet at Friday and Saturday night games. Fans may purchase individual visits to the buffet line for $15 per plate.
As part of owner Ken Babby’s $1.8 million invested in ballpark improvements in 2016, the former Sundowner Lounge was nearly doubled in size. The project Design and Construction team consisted of all Jacksonville-based firms.