If you’re off to the Australian Open (especially with kids) then you need to factor in some time to check out the AO Ballpark!
When: Every day during the Australian Open, 14-27 January 2019, from 10am – 7pm
Where: at the Richmond Station end of Melbourne Park, Olympic Boulevard, MELBOURNE
Cost: included in entry to the Australian Open (kids ground passes $5 and adults ground pass $49). Thanks to ANZ Tennis Hot Shots, the first 7,000 kids on Thursday 17 January will go FREE*!
AO Ballpark has loads of fun activities for the kids to take part in – it’s sure to be a winner, so expect a crowd. We spent over two hours checking out all the activities – and still didn’t have time to do everything.
The AO Ballpark is tucked away this year out of the thoroughfare – but if you’re exiting at the Richmond Station end of Melbourne Park you are sure to come across it… and maybe if you’re travelling to the tennis by train then this could be a fun way to start and end the day!
If your kids like water and slides then they will love the giant inflatable water slide set up – you don’t need bathers to ride (but do expect to get a little soggy as there is a small patch of water at the bottom). There is also a super soaker play area that is lots of fun and sure to get you even wetter! Given the high temperatures you can encounter at Melbourne Park during the Open, a bit of water squirting is a welcome relief.
There are some shaded spots set up and limited seating, toilet facilities, a drinking water station, a food truck and the La Roche Posay team were topping us up with sunscreen.
If you’re keen to get behind the wheel of a KIA go-kart be sure to register your time spot as soon as you arrive. This is done via one of the KIA tablets or the staff there will tell you how to do it from your phone. While the karts only go 5kmph the kids still had fun, and once you’re signed up it doesn’t take too long to get onto the track.
Also worth registering a time slot for when you frst arrive is the ANZ Hot Shot sessions – these are located just near the entrance of the AO Ballpark.
Kids meals at the food truck start at $8 – so it might be worth packing extra snacks to help you last the day without breaking the bank (also the offering was deep fried). You are allowed to bring food into Melbourne Park (just no glass) as long as your bag is small enough to fit under your seat in the stadiums. Also worth noting that there is cloaking facilities at the main entrances.
A ground pass (kids passes are $5!) gives you access to all outdoor courts, the AO Live Stage and the AO Ballpark.
The AO Live Stage features a huge line-up of local and international acts. Including:
- Mon 14 Jan – Dean Lewis
- Tue 15 Jan – Conrad Sewell
- Wed 16 Jan – The Teskey Brothers
- Thu 17 Jan – Bastille
- Fri 18 Jan – You Am I
- Sat 19 Jan – Confidence Man
- Sun 20 Jan – Flight Facilities
- Mon 21 Jan – Safia
- Tue 22 Jan – Ball Park Music
- Wed 23 Jan – DMA’S
- Thu 24 Jan – Birds of Tokyo
- Fri 25 Jan – Craig David and full band
- Sat 26 Jan – Angus & Julia Stone
- Sun 27 Jan – JET
*Free kids ground passes are available when purchasing with an adult ticket, there is a limit of 4 free kids tickets per adult.