If you go to a baseball game in Jacksonville this year, you'll see lots of shrimp.
Unfortunately, you won't see a lot of gluten-free options.
In case you missed it, our Southern League team was renamed from the Suns to the Jumbo Shrimp this season. Seriously.
Not only will you see Shrimp all over the field in the form of logos, you'll also see various shrimp dishes available at all concession stands.
Some of that shrimp is naturally gluten free, like the shrimp cocktail. But Ernest Hopkins, director of food and beverage, is very aware of cross-contamination issues and advises caution about eating at the ballpark.
And because of his concerns, the Jumbo Shrimp will not offer gluten-free hot dog buns, which is a big disappointment. But Hopkins said he would rather be safe than sorry and not take a chance that a celiac will be served the wrong bun. Remember, the Jaguars did that to me a couple of years ago, which is why I will never get anything to eat at EverBank Field again until they have a dedicated gluten-free stand (maybe this year?).
There will be Omission beer available. That of course is also risky, because there are major questions about Omission's claims that its process for brewing its barley-based beer removes the gluten. I would probably drink it if I went to a game, but not everyone will feel comfortable with that.
I went to the Shrimp's food-tasting event at the ballpark and the only thing I felt comfortable eating was the shrimp cocktail. They have various other shrimp items including coconut shrimp, a burger topped with shrimp and popcorn shrimp in a waffle bowl. None of those work for us.
I also feel compelled to say the most interesting food item is the Bold City Burger Pie, a 16-ounce burger served between two 8-inch pepperoni pizzas. I think I'm glad it's full of gluten because I wouldn't want to be tempted to try it.
Hopkins said there are a couple of gluten-free options available at the ballpark: salad shakers and fresh fruit cups with yogurt. You can also bring your own gluten-free food to the ballpark.
But if I go to see the Jumbo Shrimp, I think I will have to eat before I go.