PHOTOS: Pokémon Go Fans Descend On Downtown Durham

Jul 12, 2016

Hundreds of Pokémon Go fans swarmed the Durham Bulls Ballpark and nearby American Tobacco on Tuesday, intent on using their phones to catch as many of the exotic monsters as possible.

The new smartphone game continues to sweep the country. Many players, like Alana Pearson and Taylor Gainey, are ecstatic about being able to catch Pokémon in real life.

"I’ve been waiting for this for years," Pearson said. "When I first heard of it, Pokemon in real life, that is my dream because Pokemon is part of my childhood."

"This is basically our entire life," added Gainey.

The Durham Bulls charged Pokémon fans $5 to look for their favorite characters in and around the field. The money will be donated to Second Chance Pet Adoptions in Raleigh.

Matt Sutor, director of communications for the Durham Bulls, said the idea came from fan tweets over the weekend letting them know there was a Pokémon in the outfield behind second base.

"If fans can’t get to those characters while a game is going on, let’s do it while there isn’t a game going on," he said. "So we are on a nice two-week break and we decided now would be a perfect time to let fans on the field. And we let fans come on out."

For fans like Durham resident Breanna Byrd, it was a chance to play the game in a safe environment.

“Honestly, the thought of being able to walk around safely and play this game without being worried about being hit by a car anything like that, in broad day light,” said Byrd, a student at NYU.

See more photos of people playing Pokémon Go in downtown Durham:

Hundreds of people of all ages descended on downtown Durham on Tuesday, July 12, 2016 to play Pokémon Go. Here, one women shows the game on her phone's screen.
Credit Elizabeth Baier / WUNC

Boyfriend and girlfriend John McKinney and Ashley Hickman joined hundreds of other Pokémon Go fans outside the Durham Bulls Ballpark to play the game on Tuesday, July 12, 2016. They're both students at Appalachian State University.
Credit Leoneda Inge / WUNC
Alana Pearson and Taylor Gainey are both students at the Art Institute in downtown Durham. They joined hundreds of others on July 12, 2016 at the American Tobacco Historic District to play Pokémon Go.
Credit Leoneda Inge / WUNC

Durham residents Kayla Austin, 17, and sister Jordan Bridges, and Kelsey Bridges, both 17, stopped at the American Tobacco Historic District in downtown Durham on Tuesday, July 21, 2016 to play Pokémon Go.
Credit Elizabeth Baier / WUNC

Shraddha Joshi, 35, and Archana Singh, 43, play Pokémon Go at the American Tobacco Historic District in downtown Durham on Tuesday, July 21, 2016. Singh said she was learning the game to play with her son.
Credit Elizabeth Baier / WUNC
Friends Breanna Byrd, Brooke Joines and Michael Byrd stopped at the Durham Bulls Ballpark on Tuesday, July 21, 2016 to play Pokémon Go.
Credit Leoneda Inge / WUNC

Tina Xu, 25, and Jeffrey Champion, 27, both of Chapel Hill, stopped in downtown Durham on Tuesday, July 12, 2016 to play Pokémon Go at the American Tobacco Historic District.
Credit Elizabeth Baier / WUNC

Brothers David Diaz, 18, and Jordy Diaz, 18, of Durham stopped at the American Tobacco Historic District in downtown Durham on Tuesday, July 21, 2016 to play Pokémon Go.
Credit Elizabeth Baier / WUNC