I had an interesting, eye-opening trip with my seven-year old son to Kansas City over the Memorial Day weekend to watch the Cardinals play the Royals.
A couple of observations from the road in case you’re ever tempted to make the trip across I-70 to root on the Cardinals in “enemy territory”.
1.) Just do it! You’ll find yourself amongst friends. Actually, there were more Cardinal fans at Kauffman Stadium for Monday’s game than there were Royals fans….or at least it seemed that way. Maybe we Cards fans just had more to cheer for.
2.) Kaufman Stadium (“The K”) in KC is a terrific place to watch baseball. The stadium sits right next to the enormous Arrowhead Stadium where the Kansas City Chiefs play their home games. I’ve been there now three times (all 3 Cards wins) and the place is immaculate! Now some joke that the reason is that the Royals don’t draw many fans–and compared to the Cardinals, they have plenty of seating available–however with the Cards in town, the stadium was just about full this weekend. BTW–The fountains beyond the outfield wall are striking at first glance.
3.) EVERYONE who works at “The K” is incredibly friendly. From the ticket-takers to the folks working the concession stands and everyone in between, they seem generally happy that your there–even those of us sporting Cardinal gear.
4.) They allow you to watch the game without being interrupted five times an inning by screaming beer hawkers. Sure, if you want a beer you can find one, but they make sure they’re doing most of their selling in between innings. I love that!
5.) As we were leaving the stadium and walking to our car, an older woman wearing a Royals jersey approached us in a golf cart and asked if we’d like a ride back to our car! I had to ask her if she was serious–she was.
6.) Amazingly, not one person mentioned 1985 or uttered the name Don Denkinger. That was a pleasant surprise as well. (BTW–If you don’t know the significance of either, you’ll have to Google it yourself. It takes too much out of me to revisit that sad chapter in Cardinal history.)
All in all though, everything worked out great for us. The Cards swept the two games and we had a great time. The Royals are slumping and that’s a shame because they have some terrific young players and if any town deserves a little winning baseball for a change, its Kansas City. They haven’t won anything there since…well—1985.
As far as creating a nice game-day experience for a Father and Son from across the state however, they’re already winners in my book.