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.