By: Lindsay Ward
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Today, for the first time in almost two years, fans will return to PNC Park when the Pirates take on the Cubs at 1:35 p.m.
While fans returning may give us a taste of life pre-pandemic, once inside of PNC Park, many changes will be in place due to the pandemic.
WATCH: KDKA’s Rich Walsh Previews The Game
First and foremost, the park will only be at 25% capacity to allow for the CDC’s recommended six feet of distancing, meaning there will only be around 9,000 people.
Everything around the park will be cashless, including concessions and clubs.
The Pirates also have new signs throughout the park so people will know where to walk or sit, all as part of an effort to keep everyone safe but still enjoy a game of baseball.
WATCH: KDKA’s Lindsay Ward Speaks With Pirates Executive Vice President of Sales & Business Development, David Burke
Masks will be required at all times unless eating or drinking.
As of today, the Pirates are only selling tickets for the first two months of the season but that could change based on CDC recommendations.
They are hoping to allow more fans as the summer goes on.
An important note – no tailgating will be allowed outside of PNC Park.
When the Pirates take the field today, it will be a special day for Pirates fans but it’s also going to be a monumental day for one local family – the Bednars.
David Bednar grew up in the Pittsburgh area playing baseball and watching the Pirates.
Two years ago, he defied the odds and made it to the major leagues after he was drafted in the 35th round.
WATCH: David Bednar Living Out Childhood Dream
Following an off-season trade, he’s now pitching for his boyhood team.
Today, he’s expected to make his pitching debut at PNC Park and his parents could not be more excited.
“I hope we don’t pass out,” said Sue Bednar, David’s mother. “I hope we’re able to see it because it’s going to be amazing.”
First pitch is scheduled for 1:35 p.m. and you can get the Opening Day Forecast from Ron Smiley right here!