SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - It wasn't the opening day anyone envisioned, but by game time, foot traffic had picked up around Petco Park.
It was vastly different compared to past years, according to Brant Crenshaw. He owns Social Tap San Diego, located next to the ballpark. Due to public health orders, the capacity at their restaurant was significantly reduced. However, they were able to fill the tables and chairs set up in their outdoor areas, and by the start of the game, they had a healthy waitlist.
Crenshaw says despite the pandemic, Opening Day still brought more people out than usual.
"This is baseball. We're Americans. They go hand in hand," he said. It's definitely special and were playing the hand we're dealt."
Meanwhile, there were many fans spotted decked out in game-day gear trying to catch a glimpse of the game from their balconies near the ballpark. Some fans waved Padres flags from the balcony to show support.
Chip Messenger kept opening day tradition going by watching from his balcony. He has a great view of the field and has invited a small group of people to watch the game from the outdoor vantage point. He plans to share the spot with other people as the season goes on.
"I run a tight ship on opening day, this is my 8th or 9th opening day from my balcony," Messenger said. "So you invite people you can't have too many, but I want to start inviting people I don't know in a few days. There's going to be like some babies for the time, moms and dads, couples you know. I'll make it fun."
Messenger says he usually leaves his balcony party to go to his seats at the ballpark, this year is different. But he is just happy to have baseball back after the season was delayed and shortened.
"It's about time," he said.