On Monday I went to Kansas City with a few friends of mine who are all in my department at college. I rode with Jeff and Nolan, who were gracious enough to invite me along. We had tickets to see the sold-out Royals vs Yankees game.
We arrived in KC right at rush hour. Let me tell you a bit about Kansas City traffic. Honestly, it has the worst traffic out of any other city I’ve been through. The cause is likely from the spread out suburbs that surround it. It took us a LONG time to move on 435, 70, and several other loops that crisscross the city. Traffic just stops, without reason, and we ended up driving on various freeways for a good 2 hours trying to find a reasonable place to get some food before the game. That was pretty much a failure, so we eventually tried to make our way back to the stadium at around 6:30.
When we finally got close, we saw the huge lines waiting at the various gates to get into the parking area. This took even more time, and we still were trying to coordinate 3 different cars of people. We eventually paid our parking and found a space, walked the good half a mile or more to the stadium itself (which sits right beside Arrowhead, home of the Chiefs), and eventually found the rest of our group. Once in the actual stadium, things were great. We missed the first pitch, but not by much.
Our seats were up high in the upper-deck, but they were still pretty good. Kauffman stadium has some very pretty fountains lining the back wall, along with a large video screen. The stadium is packed very tightly, seating somewhere over 40,000 people. The official attendance for the game was 40,406, which has to be the most people I’ve ever experienced a sporting event with.
One thing I found interesting and maybe even heart-warming was the way that the walking venders handled transactions. Let’s say you wanted a beer. You’re in the middle of your row, so the guy can’t get it to you directly. What happens? A long assembly line, made up of fans all around you, manages to hand down both your money and your ID, and then hands you back your change and the beer. Despite relying on the honor system, it worked perfectly!
I was worried going into the game, since the Yankees always manage to play really good baseball. The Royals, in case you are unfamiliar with them, always manage to mess up games “royally.” The first few innings were like I was expecting, with the Yankees making a 4 point lead. But right at the middle of the game, something happened. The Royals started hitting double after double after double. Eleven of them. THE CROWD WAS WILD! No one could believe it! In the Kansas City Star this morning, they quoted a player saying it was “like Monday Night Football.”
How did the game end? 12-9, Royals win! And it ended on a double play!
Can it get any better?! It can! Every ticket holder received a free dozen Krispy Kreme donuts!
After all of this excitement, we headed to IHOP to refuel, and then to Jeremiah’s apartment to crash for the night. We left there 6 hours later (7:45am), facing rush hour yet again, dropped Brian off in Manhattan, and I finally made it back to Wichita at 1:30pm, only to work at 3pm.
I certainly redeemed the summer! I took many pictures, which you can find here. I even decided to make the resolution higher, since I think most of you can handle waiting a bit longer for a better quality picture to download.