7 things to do in Chandler, AZ, while you're watching spring training
Updated Feb. 20, 2019
Warm air, sunshine and the crack of a wooden bat: these are but a few of the wonders of late February and March in Arizona. Cactus League spring training baseball has been an Arizona tradition since 1947.
Major League Baseball has 15 teams that call Arizona home for preseason baseball: The Arizona Diamondbacks, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Colorado Rockies, Kansas City Royals, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Los Angeles Dodgers, Milwaukee Brewers, Oakland Athletics, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners and the Texas Rangers.
However, trips to Scottsdale, Surprise, Glendale, Goodyear, Peoria, Mesa and Tempe aren't the only attractions to be had during a spring training visit to the Phoenix area. Chandler itself has a number of attractions and fun things to do when you visit.
1. Wild Horse Pass Casino. We've got your hotel covered, but there is plenty of entertainment to be had at this Chandler venue. Among the shows scheduled for February and March are tributes to Merle Haggard and ABBA as well as a show featuring the songs of Billy Joel and Elton John. There is great entertainment to be had all year long.
2. Phoenix Premium Outlets. Open from 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. six nights a week (and 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. on Sundays), this shopping center has something for everybody. From Brooks Brothers to Tommy Hilfiger, Coach to Michael Kors and dozens of more awesome brands, this outlet mall provides a phenomenal change-of-pace in between baseball game days.
3. Chandler Fashion Center Speaking of shopping, you'll want to check out the second largest mall in the Phoenix metro area. Not only does the Chandler Fashion Center have great deals on the inside, it's got an outdoor area called The Village, complete with a splash pad to enjoy during warmer months. It's open 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. six days a week and 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday.
4. KOLI Equestrian Center. You don't have to be an experienced horseback rider to enjoy a day at the KOLI Equestrian Center. Located in Chandler but serving the entire Phoenix area, KOLI entertains large groups, families with children and more. They have options for sunrise and sunset rides, carriage and hay wagon rides and horseback trail rides as well. If you're headed to the area, call them for reservations at 1-602-796-3495.
5. Zelma Basha Salmeri Gallery of Western American and American Indian Art. What's a vacation without a bit of culture? The Bashas' art gallery has a "vast composite of oil paintings, watercolors, acrylics, pastel and charcoal drawings, pen and inks, bronze, wood and natural stone sculptures, wood-turned bowls, basketry, pottery, kachinas and jewelry," according to its website. Admission is free, but they do recommend that visitors call ahead to make sure the gallery is open before a visit. Their information line is 480-895-5230.
6. Arizona Railway Museum. More culture to be had in Chandler, the Arizona Railyway Museum presents Arizona Railway Day 2017 from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. on February 25. Admission is free, and it's sure to be a big hit with any railroad enthusiast. Do note, however, that this museum is only open on weekends. Cost is $2 per person or $5 for families and groups, and tours are available.
7. Golf courses galore! Fore! If you come to Arizona for spring training, be sure to bring your clubs. In the Chandler area alone, you have the Ocotillo Golf Club, the Whirlwind Golf Club, the San Marcos Golf Course and the Bear Creek Golf Complex.
So, if you're ready to pack your bags, we know just the place to stay. Come for the spring training baseball, but take some time to explore what Chandler has to offer!