While many organizations have already held their fan celebrations before the players head down to spring training, the San Diego Padres have decided to go in a different direction in 2024. With a pair of exhibition games against the Mariners set to happen March 25 and 26, the Padres opted to combine the festivities into one giant event, and Padres FanFest will begin on March 24.
The above link has all the nitty gritty details on how to attend, but there are some important things to point out. Admission into FanFest is free, however, fans still have to go online and get tickets when they become available on Friday, February 16, as they are limiting the number of entries.
Parking is also free in the Padres lots and the gates will open at 12:00 p.m. PST for Padres Members and 12:30 p.m. PST to the general public. Tickets to the exhibition games against Seattle aren't free, but they're just $20 for adults and $10 for kids 14 and under (and are sold separately).
2024 Padres FanFest: Tickets, Schedule, Events
One reason for the later date for FanFest this year probably has to do with some of the renovations that will be revealed at the event. Gallagher Square has gotten a nice overhaul and the statue of Tony Gwynn got moved to next to Trevor Hoffman's as well. The usual amenities will be present with autograph sessions with players, Q&As, as well as the Padres Foundation Garage Sale.
San Diego is also starting up a Celebrity/Alumni softball game this year, which should be a blast. If you want to see how Steve Finley, Mark Loretta, and others look these days, that is a must-attend event. Other celebrities from different sports and industries will also be playing, although the full list isn't available just yet.
For more details and to monitor when tickets go available, the Padres did set up a website to house everything in one spot. Just a few days after that, the 2024 season officially gets underway and Padres baseball will finally be back.