Monday, April 26, 2010

All Aboard

In an article listing Twins series that make for good road trip opportunities this summer, I expressed my excitement about a new venture from Scott Povolny called TwinsTrain. Basically, the deal is that you pay an (essentially) all-inclusive fee and you hop aboard a bus, head to a location where the Twins are playing and get hooked up with a hotel, tickets to a couple games and various other niceties. Given the Twins' centralized midwest location -- which is ideal for road tripping to numerous different away series -- and the generally excellent nature of the Twins fan base, I'd long been hoping to see something like this come together. Naturally, I was very pleased to see someone finally taking the steps to make it a reality.

This past weekend, I made my first trip on TwinsTrain, which headed down to Kansas City for the Twins' series against the Royals. I can happily report that, despite being in its infancy, Scott's operation went very smoothly and I certainly speak for everyone that I went with in saying that it was an absolute blast. I'll give a rundown of the experience (as best I can remember it -- there was a lot of drinking) for those who may have an interest in taking one of the remaining trips planned for this summer.

Our bus departed early on Friday morning. The fans aboard the bus were essentially divided into two groups: the rowdy and ready-to-party crowd and the more reserved folks who actually care about the state of their livers. Naturally, I fell into the first group -- come on, I'm 24 -- and we congregated on the back of the bus where coolers of beer and other refreshments were provided. Those who were more interested in relaxing sat closer to the front of the bus. Despite the disparity in intentions for these two groups, everyone got along well and Scott did a great job of mingling with everyone and helping keep all parties comfortable and happy.

We arrived at our hotel in Kansas City in the mid-afternoon and hung out for a while before hopping back aboard the bus to head down to Kauffman Stadium. There, we parked and tailgated with some fellow Twins fans for a while before heading into the ballpark and watching a Twins victory from some nice seats down the first base line.

The next day, we headed to Gates Bar-B-Q for some lunch, then swung by a local bar to kill a few hours before the game. We got out to the stadium for a complimentary pregame buffet, and Scott somehow managed to get us in a free suite for not only the buffet but for the game itself (which was extremely nice since it was a rather rainy evening). The game was a 12-inning marathon, but in the end the Twins came out on top, improving their record in TwinsTrain-attended games to 4-0. After the game, we bussed out to the Power and Lights District in downtown Kansas City to check out the night life. I was blown away by how cool this area was, and more great times were had.

We jumped back on the bus around 10:30 on Sunday morning for the long ride home. Here, I exacerbated my hangover by making the mistake of eating a Double Down sandwich from KFC for lunch. If you've never heard of it, the Double Down is a chicken "sandwich" which substitutes two pieces of fried chicken for bread and includes bacon, sauce and two types of cheese. It is perhaps the single most unhealthy piece of food I've ever seen, but I had to try one just so I could say I had. This turned out to be a mistake. Wow, that was gross.

Anyway, in summary, the trip was an awesome time. Scott did a terrific job of keeping everything organized and on track, and our bus driver Ed was a hoot. I'm definitely going to aim to make another trip later this summer and I'd recommend that everyone else do the same. For future dates, rates and all other info, you can check out TwinsTrain.com.

8 comments:

bob said...

Ok, so I said you 'write about the Twins with clarity and maturity.'

(http://www.newsbobber.com/twins_blogs.php)

I never said you BEHAVE with maturity.

Nick N. said...

No sooner did I call the Double Down the most unhealthy piece of food I've ever seen do I come across this. My goodness. Ick.

I never said you BEHAVE with maturity.

Not on a party bus!

Travis said...

Looks like a good time. Trying to talk some friends into hitting up the Detroit weekend.

Also, if you ever find anything even remotely resembling a 'Krispy Kreme Double Down' ever again, please do not share it. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Great recap, Nick.

The TwinsTrain sounds absolutely awesome.

...additionally, I think you'd be a hoot to have a few beers with and watch a game.

Anonymous said...

How much did the weekend cost you?

Matthew said...

Oh man, I'm so jealous you were at Saturday's game, in a suite, nonetheless. TwinsTrain sounds as good as advertised when we met them at the first TwinsCentric party. I think I'll be on board for the BrewCrew series. Just one question, was the brew supply on the bus adequate or would you recommend bringing some reserves?

Nick N. said...

How much did the weekend cost you?

I got a discounted rate in exchange for helping Scott with some of his marketing efforts, but the general rates (which are quite reasonable, all things considered) are posted on the website. Beyond the cost of the TwinsTrain, you can pretty much dictate your own spending, depending on how much you want to spend on food, drinking, entertainment, etc.

Just one question, was the brew supply on the bus adequate or would you recommend bringing some reserves?

A very good question. I found the supply to be more than adequate, but this trip featured a smaller group and only a handful of us were drinking.

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