Sunday, August 25, 2013

Take me out to the ball game: Syracuse Chief's game

Saturday loomed for a long while with a whole lot of nothing to do. I did a few errands, caught up on my emails, and lounged around, but Saturday evening we had tickets to The Syracuse Chiefs Game thanks to my neighbors Jenny and Greg, and guess what...They were FREE! I love FREE. They ended up giving us 15 tickets, but we only used 5 and gave the rest away. The Syracuse Chiefs are the local baseball team, and it never is a summer without at least one trip to a game, and since I had not obtained FREE tickets for the season prior I was thrilled to get these. I had tried to get some more of my friends to come and join us, but they all seemed to have other things happening. Tami ended up joining us but her family was out of town.
We arrived just before the game was to start and found Skootch the team mascot, and NO I do not know what he is exactly, at the front gate. We all got a picture, sorry it is not so good, I had the shot on manual focus and totally forgot and just took the shots.

Before the game, I had bought some peanuts and cracker jacks so we could enjoy some just like the song. Ben found a twenty in his pocket and treated his brother to French fries and Tami bought some too with cheese and gravy. My peanuts and crackerjacks were less then appealing after that.
 I was extremely disappointed to find that these peanuts were not salted. Mark claimed that all peanuts in their shells were unsalted. I swore that wasn't true and actually found some that were salted. The vendor thought they got that way by soaking them in salt water. That would make sense to me.
I couldn't find real Cracker Jacks (with the prize in the box) so we had to settle with crunch and munch. Neither was as good as the Fries!

Enough about the food, what about the game?

Well the Chiefs were ahead for the first several innings, and it was actually an exciting game. I often find that baseball can become VERY boring after awhile unless something gets wild on the field. Several runs in, and some great catches in the field kept me entertained, and I so enjoy making noise to the players or with the calls. "Swing batter batter swing". I yelled and screamed and I just know my hubby was embarrassed, but he hides it well. What I did find truly sad was that there were so few fans in the stands. That was perhaps more embarrassing, then my solo voice yelling to the players. I personally like less crowded places and will do just about anything to stay away from to many people, but it is truly such a great stadium and the games can become so much fun it's disappointing that the city of Syracuse has so little support for this team.
 As the game progressed and I nibbled on my friends French fries..(Damn her!) between yelling and dancing to the musical interludes, Tami and I decided to take a walk around the stadium to see what else was happening. We could see a Family Zone and were interested in what that was all about.

We found the family zone as well as several booths of yummy's to eat, and a souvenir shop. The family zone had several activities for free to enjoy as well as batting and throwing practice for a modest price.
Here's an embarrassing story about the Family Zone. As we were walking through the area I notice this cage for throwing practice (above) but what I did not notice was that there was a line of kids waiting to take their throw. They waited patiently as I stood in front of all of them to grab a picture...what an idiot I felt when I finally realized all these kids, their parents and the game controller was looking at me like..what the hell is wrong with you lady. I made my apologizes and left quickly.  Thinking the fun zone would be great for the boys we headed back to our seats and ran into them as we were in that direction. We convinced them to change our seats closer to the field and the fun zone and the boys we off meeting up with one of Gavin's school friends (Tucker). We obtained new seats, and watched as several boys were waiting with gloves in hand to catch a fowl ball, which we got to see happen to one lucky lad.
 A quick shot from behind home plate.
 and some cute souvenirs at the gift shop. The boys got an opportunity to spin the wheel and won some great prizes. Ben won a bouncy ball and Gavin got a Chief's necklace.
Although I do not have a clue what Skootch is, the other mascot who will remain nameless in this post because I do not know it, and I have never seen him at a game before to get his name is the Conductor and the engine below are because the stadium is right along side the train station. All through the evening we heard the trains running by and when the game was going well, the music would pump out a steam whistle to get the crowd going. There is a lot of history to the stadium including the owner of the stadium, right now it is M&T bank stadium. The name, the Chiefs was originally of the Native American kind (to be politically correct) they had tossed around the idea of changing it, and for a short time they were the Sky Chiefs, and an airplane was the logo. When and how the engine chiefs came in I do not know, but they have always been the Syracuse Chiefs to my recollection.
A view from our new seats. Why we couldn't take one of the hundred seats in the non-FREE section was beyond me, it wasn't like anyone was sitting there. They were still great seats just the same.
 As the game continued the Charlotte Knights took the lead, and things were looking bleak, Skootch did his seventh inning stretch dance, and the announcers played the win a free taco if we strike the batter out . They had played the game two times prior with no strikes out but guess what the pitcher struck him out and we ALL won FREE taco's from Taco Bell.  Loven that. Ben cursed that we had not kept all 15 tickets because we could have had 15 free taco's, Gavin noted that we just gave away all those tacos to some happy people. Chief's were loosing their lead, and it looked like it would be the end so we decided to head home and beat the crowd (what crowd?). Plus now we all wanted our FREE taco of course. Decision made without my input we stopped to get our FREE taco's at Taco Bell before heading home calling it a GREAT very cheep. (I only paid for those uneaten peanuts and cracker jacks at something like $3.50) night. So for $3.50 we had a great night of entertainment, some free activities for the kids, a free necklace and bouncy ball, and FIVE (actually SIX because Mark had one extra ticket) FREE taco's.  
What a wonderful evening we all had, it was so much fun that it really wasn't to sad that the Chiefs lost 5 to 4 that evening.
Today I worked at the SBH inpatient from 8am-4:30 and it was a long long long day. I did enjoy covering groups, had a delicious FREE lunch that included fries... really are the powers above trying to sabatosh my diet or what, and played volleyball for the first time in nearly 25 years. Now I am beat and anticipate a very busy week of beach time, the NY state fair, and possibly some long walks with the dogs.