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4. Durham Bulls / Research Triangle Park (RTP)


This tour will take tour participants again into the city of Durham, part of the North Carolina triangle to visit the Durham Athletic Park (DAP), the Durham Bulls Athletic Park (DBAP), the Tobacco Warehouse district and the Research Triangle Park (RTP).

Durham Athletic Park (DAP)

Durham Athletic Park former home (1926-94) of the world-famous Durham Bulls and film location for the movie “Bull Durham,” starring Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon, and Tim Robbins. The historic Durham Athletic Park was built in 1926 as El Toro Stadium, with downtown Durham's skyline as a backdrop. The hallmark of the facility is the round tower with conical roof, which serves as a ticket office.


While the Durham Bulls now play their home games a mile south in Durham Bulls Athletic Park, historic Durham Athletic Park is still alive, hosting numerous festivals, special events, and amateur baseball games each year.

Durham Bulls Athletic Park (DBAP)

Durham Bulls Athletic Park, frequently called the DBAP (pronounced D-bap), is a ballpark in Durham, North Carolina that is home to the Durham Bulls, the AAA affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays of Major League Baseball. It is also home to the Duke Blue Devils and North Carolina Central Eagles college baseball teams.

The Bulls began playing at the DBAP in 1995 when the team played in the Class A Advanced Carolina League. The Bulls then moved up to the Triple-A level in 1998, causing the DBAP to be expanded. The stadium was designed by Populous (formerly HOK Sport), who also designed Camden Yards in Baltimore, Jacobs Field in Cleveland, and Coors Field in Colorado as part of the "new" old-stadium-like movement of the 1990s.

By design, the left field fence is a 32-foot (9.8 m)-high wall, 305 feet (93 m) from home plate, known as the Blue Monster. It resembles Fenway Park’s Green Monster, including a manual scoreboard. The club introduced a furry "Blue Monster" mascot in during the 2007 season who now shares mascot duties with "Wool E. Bull" and "Lucky the Wonder Dog".

The bull sign mounted atop of the Blue Monster was modeled after the bull used in the 1988 film, Bull Durham. The actual sign from the movie (which featured the previous home of the Bulls, Durham Athletic Park) was formerly hung in the concourse level of the DBAP but is now in storage.

Research Triangle Park (RTP)

In 1959, the founders of Research Triangle Park pioneered a new model for conducting Research & Development. Their innovative focus on the link between universities, businesses and government created a groundbreaking innovation model that has since been replicated worldwide.

But models of success are never static. To fulfill the ever-changing needs of RTP’s fast-paced global businesses, leaders of the Park continue to invest in design, technology and infrastructure to maximize use of the 7,000-acre park. In 2012, RTP’s leaders unveiled a new Master Plan for the Park, the first in 50 years.