Matt has a lifelong goal to see a ball game in all 30 major league ballparks. And guess what? When you marry somebody you also marry their lifelong goals and their bucket list. Luckily my love of baseball, travel, food and booze means I'm more than happy to tag along on this adventure. Matt's been to 16 which is just barely over halfway and I'm lagging with nine but that's okay, it's his dream not mine. We've decided we'll take at least one trip each year to a city with the sole purpose of checking another ball park off the list. Other travel for work or weddings or family events may help us get closer to the goal but we love the idea of setting aside a long weekend every year to see a ballgame and eat and drink our way around another American town. We're really good at that part. You may recall our trip to Toronto last year.
When we set out to decide which park to visit this year we picked a weekend in August and then cross referenced with our shortlist of options of this year. Minneapolis, Denver, Seattle and Kansas City. Turned out, Kansas City was the only team at home that weekend... decision made!
Kansas City is a great little town. We visited the sculpture park of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (isn't the giant shuttlecock the coolest?!) KC is also home to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum AND the American Jazz Museum. And bonus, they're next door to each other.
And there was BBQ! I mean, of course there was because with us there's always BBQ. Those burnt ends were the best I've ever had from Joe's Kansas City. They also had smoked chicken gumbo which was just out of place enough to catch my attention so I had to try it because usually oddball menu items like that are there for a reason. I was right it was insane. We always sniff out the local breweries and Boulevard is the biggest and the best in KC, this IPA rocked my world. (I liked it so much I bought a t-shirt). There were also fancy schmancy sno-cones (it was a trillion degrees, after all) and a cute brunch at Succotash where our waiter informed us that we were a part of a pay-it-forward that and been going on for hours. Our brunch had been paid for by someone so we picked a group of people to treat to brunch. It was the very cute.
And of course the entire point of the trip, our visit to Kauffman Stadium (known as "The K" to locals), was a hit. Highlights included a super festive hometown fan vibe (nearly everyone was wearing Royals gear of some sort and they're having a great season), a nice selection of craft beers, inventive hot dogs from Andrew Zimmern and fountains and lights in the outfield. Oh and the Royals won! I'm sure we had something to do with it.
Thanks Kansas City! I can't say we'll be back, we still have 14 ballparks to visit, but we had a fantastic time. Also I gained five pounds in KC, if anyone cares..