THE BIG LEAGUE TOURS BLOG

Alcatraz & San Francisco - West Coast Baseball Tour Part V

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 @ 10:30 AM

Major League Baseball teams and stadiums are located in some of the greatest cities that our country has to offer. So it only stands to reason that we allow our guests time to explore these cities while on our baseball tours. That's been one of our basic features since we began Big League Tours in 2006. The other part of that, is we give you the flexibility to see what you want to see, to make the trip what you want of it and not be forced to do things you aren't interested in. 

San Francisco is one of those great cities. And explore it we did. From the moment we touched Alcatraz - main corridordown, we began our exploration. We stayed right in the heart of Frisco. Our guests were given Metro Passports and could ride anywhere in the city for free as much and as often as they wanted. 

We also like to help our guests plan out their free time if they'd like us to. Knowing that Alcatraz tours sell out days or weeks in advance, we asked our guests if they'd like to take that tour and booked it for them. Here's a shot from inside the infamous prison, with our headsets on taking the audio tour. 

Our guests were able to spend time at Pier 39's restaurants and shops, Ghiradelli Square,San Francisco Trolley Car Chinatown, and other parts of downtown San Francisco. They were also able to venture to the north part of the city and see the Golden Gate bridge up close. 

Another thing you have to do in San Francisco is ride a trolley car. Here'a a view of the ride that we took from Ghiradelli Square back to our hotel near Market Street. As you can tell from the picture, the sun was out and things had cleared off this afternoon. We had a lot of fun standing on the platform and getting a unique experience this city offers. 

If you are looking for baseball vacation packages that offer you the advantages of group tours but the flexibility to explore on your own, we hope that you'll consider traveling with Big League Tours. We truly offer the best of both worlds!

Tags: San Francisco, west coast baseball tour, sports travel and tours, ballpark tours

Baseball Road Trips Are Just Around the Corner

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Sat, Feb 25, 2012 @ 07:19 PM

Ah, yes. Players have reported to camp, Spring Training games begin in about a week, and baseball news has heated up. All those things mean that baseball trips are just around the corner!Yankee Stadium just before a game

I'm personally hosting a couple of our tours and have started putting together my plans for the non-baseball portions of our itineraries. For instance, on our West Coast Tour, I'm looking forward to seeing Pike Place Market in Seattle, touring Alcatraz in San Francisco, and eating authentic Mexican food in San Diego.

I'm also really looking forward to meeting up with Big League Tours' customers in their hometowns and at their home stadiums. They can always give us a local take on the ballpark, the team, and the city's sites and attractions. I'm in the picture to the right just outside of Yankee Stadium with a couple of guests from California. We're planning to catch a game together at AT&T Park when our baseball tour comes through town. Can't wait to re-connect!Trip brochure link

So it's not too early to begin your tour planning for the 2012 baseball season. Find the tour that suits your needs and start laying in all the "extras". Let us know if you need help planning that perfect baseball vacation package!

Check out our 2012 Baseball Tours, Download a trip brochure, and Sign-up for the baseball experience for a lifetime of memories!

Tags: San Francisco, west coast baseball tour, baseball road trips, baseball stadiums, ballpark tours, AT&T Park

Vida Blue Joins Big League Tours in San Francisco

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Mon, Feb 13, 2012 @ 06:58 PM

Vida Blue - Following his Major League debut the summer of 1969, Vida was the 1971 American League CyVida Blue at Big League Player Experience Young Award winner and Most Valuable Player. As part of the Oakland A's, he won three World Series Championships in 1972, 1973 and 1974. He appeared in six All Star Games and was the first pitcher to start an All Star game for both leagues.

Blue played for three teams - the A’s, Giants, Royals. He was traded to Giants in 1978 for 8 players and $390K and promptly won 18 games that year. The Mansfield, Louisiana native resides near San Francisco and actively promotes the game of baseball. You can see more of Blue's statistics on the MLB.com site.

We're very excited about the returning of Vida Blue as part of our Big League Player Experiences on our West Coast and Bay Area Tours. Vida has made a couple of appearances for us (appearance in 2006 at Chop House above and in 2008 below at AT&T Park during Giants batting practice) and is always a fan favorite.BLT Group at AT

About the Big League Player Experiences - Get inside the game like never before when you meet up with Big League ballplayers on each of our baseball road trips. Players like Vida Blue, Bill Lee, Dave Parker and Tom Browning have joined us on our tours. Join us on a Big League Tours and you'll see what our guests tell us is the favorite part of their experience. See more about the Player Experiences.

Tags: San Francisco, ballpark tours, AT&T Park, Giants, A's, Oakland, Coliseum

Guest Blog: Will Carroll on PNC Park

Posted by Big League Tours on Tue, Jan 17, 2012 @ 12:00 PM

You can argue, but PNC Park in Pittsburgh is the best park in baseball. Sure, Wrigley and Fenway have that historic charm and are maybe a bit more integrated into the neighborhood, but at PNC, you can go to the bathroom, park, and oh those views. For years, people have said the only thing wrong with PNC is the team on the field. Last summer showed that's changing, so there'sWalking thru PNC Park during the game to see different views no time like now to get to the park before it's elbow to elbow. (Though frankly, the park is even better filled and loud.)

Get a seat on the third base side, especially on night games, so you can see the Roberto Clemente Bridge and the full view of the Pittsburgh skyline. The city is just across the river, a miniature Manhattan with a distinctive skyline. Make sure to have a Primanti Brothers sandwich, a Pittsburgh tradition that puts the fries and slaw inside the bread! (Trust me, share one.) Save room for Manny Sanguillen's BBQ, which is hidden behind the batter's eye in dead center field. Many times, Manny himself will be out there!

Sitting in the right field bleachers is a very unique view. I've gone to theWill Carroll w baseball resized 600 fenced area underneath and carried on conversations with Garrett Jones during games. There aren't too many places you can do that in baseball. As you leave, check the statues of Pittsburgh greats around the park - Willie Stargell, Honus Wagner, and Roberto Clemente remind us all of how good it's been in Pittsburgh. You'll agree, PNC is the best park in America.

Will Carroll is a contributor to Sports Illustrated. Called "the industry standard" by Peter Gammons, Carroll's work on injuries and sports medicine has been groundbreaking for both fans of the game and those inside the game. He is a member of the BBWAA.

Tags: baseball stadiums, ballpark tours, Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, PNC Park, Pirates, Pittsburgh

Nationals Park in Washington, DC

Posted by Big League Tours on Tue, Jan 03, 2012 @ 05:38 PM

Guests arriving at Nationals ParkJune 16, 2011 - Not to jinx it, but so far we've managed to dodge the rain for all the games on our tour. In fact, as we left our hotel in Washington, DC to go to Nationals Park, it started to rain slightly and then the skies opened up and poured. But the rain stopped about an hour before game time and allowed the teams and groundscrew to get ready for the game on time.

While we've had other baseball tours to NationalCenterfield bar at Nationals Parks Park over the last couple of years, I personally haven't been back since it's inaugural year in 2008. The community around the ballpark, while it still needs some work, has improved immensely in the 3 years since my last visit.

Here are some photos of our guests arriving at the ballpark and some photos from around the stadium. Couldn't help but take some photos of the Capitol Building and the Washington Monument from inside the park, too.
Capitol Building from inside Nationals ParkWashington Monument from inside Nationals Park

Tags: Washington D.C., Nationals, tour operator, sports travel and tours, baseball trips, ballpark tours, big league tours, group tours, Nationals Park, Baseball

Happy New Year from Big League Tours!!

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Sun, Jan 01, 2012 @ 09:00 AM

Looking Forward to 2012! (And New Baseball Tours!!)

Here's wishing a Happy New Year to all the baseball and travel fans we have have come to know over the last six baseball seasons. It's been so much fun combining two things that I love so muchPrivate group tour of Yankee Stadium and offering them to you. It has been a privilege to serve each one of you!

As we head into our seventh season of offering baseball tours, we just want to say how grateful we are for the past six years and how much we're looking forward to a fantastic 2012. We invite you to connect with us on the way!

Have a great year and we'll see you at the ballpark!!

Tags: baseball trips, ballpark tours, big league tours, sports vacation, group tours

Baseball Tour Holiday Promotions and Tour Spotlight

Posted by Doug Lawson on Fri, Dec 16, 2011 @ 02:10 PM

Book before Dec. 23 to get your extra hotel night

Folks have been booking early to take advantage of our free hotel night promotion.  For example, we've had travelers from the West Coast select to arrive a day before their Midwest 2 Tour begins so they won't be rushed after their cross country flight. We've also had a family choose the early arrival option on their Chicago/Milwaukee so they can have a day to check out the sites in Chicago.  The promotion ends Dec. 23.  Call or email us with any questions.

 

Still time to get a Big League Tours' gift pack under the tree

A Big League Tours' trip is a great gift for the holidays.  Any true baseball fan would love to travel with Big League Tours in 2012.  Plus, you can get a Big League Tours gift pack for them to open up on that special day.  Just book your tour by the end of this week (Dec.16), and let us know you want a gift pack.  We'll send it out right away and only charge for the shipping.


Tour Spotlight:  Hall of Fame Tours

Grand hall at Yankee Stadium This season, Big League Tours is offering four tour packages that visit the most popular destinations in baseball.  Our Hall of Fame Tours include games at Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park, Citi Field and a visit to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.  We always provide great, lower level seats; an MLB player experience; first  class hotels; and the flexibility to enjoy your trip.  Click on the tour listings below to see the details.

Hall of Fame Tour 1

Hall of Fame Tour 2

Hall of Fame Tour 3

Hall of Fame Tour 4

Tags: group travel, baseball trips, baseball tours, baseball travel, baseball vacation package, ballpark tours, Fenway Park, Yankees, Yankee Stadium, hall of fame

Museum and Stadium Tours in Baltimore

Posted by Big League Tours on Wed, Nov 23, 2011 @ 12:00 PM

The Warehouse Building in Camden YardsOn Eutaw Street beginning our escorted tourGuests in the dugout at Orioles ParkRuth Museum
June 16, 2011 - Whenever we're on the road with our group travel tours, we try to schedule baseball stadium tours to get a behind-the-scenes look at how things operate in the bigs. So while in Baltimore, we took in the guided tour of Orioles Park.

The tour that they give is probably one of the best tours in the majors based on the amount of time that they give you as well as the information that they share.
Inside the museum
The tour starts on Eutaw Street and visits the club level, luxury and party suites, media room, press box, the field and dugouts. All in all it's a great tour that's worth the visit.

We also stopped in the Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum which is just a few blocks from Orioles Park. The museum is rich with history of Babe's life, not just his formative years in Baltimore. Here are some photos from the Museum.

Tags: group travel, Orioles, tour operator, Baltimore, baseball tours, baseball stadiums, ballpark tours, group tours, Oriole Park

Take a Tour of Target Field - Minnesota Twins New Stadium

Posted by Big League Tours on Tue, Nov 22, 2011 @ 09:30 PM

January 28, 2010 - The new baseball stadium that will be on the itinerary for one of our group travel tours is Target Field, the new home of the Minnesota Twins, that's set to open in April. We're always excited to visit new ballparks and this is no exception. Our tour is heading up there over Memorial Day weekend so we're hoping to catch some warmer air! The views of this baseball stadium tour look great. I'm really excited to head up to the Twin Cities to see the ballpark.

One thing I noticed in the footage are the signs over some of the concession stands. I know that Minnesota is known for its State Fair and fair food. Looks like it made its way into the ballpark. Walleye on a Stick? Haven't seen that anywhere else on our MLB Tours!

Enjoy the video. If you'd like to join us on one of our tour vacations, this would be a great one!

Tags: stadium tours, Minnesota, baseball stadiums, ballpark tours, MLB tours, Twins, Target Field

East Coast 1 Tour - Part Five

Posted by Big League Tours on Tue, Nov 22, 2011 @ 03:00 PM

May 9, 2009, Boston - Today we left Cooperstown and headed on the Mass Turnpike to Boston to hang out for several hours on Yawkey Way. Of all the places we go on our group travel tours, this is one of, if not my favorite place to visit. The atmosphere around Fenway is so hard to beat. It's one of the best places for family vacation tours or vacation group tours of all sizes.

We arrived at the ballpark in time to do some shopping and take in the noon tour of Fenway. This baseball stadium tour is one of the best. Maybe because Fenway isn't a stadium at all. It's a ballpark. The oldest ballpark in the major leagues at that.

I was surprised to learn that a few sections of the ballpark had new seats installed in the off season making them a little roomier (a little, mind you...) and a little more comfortable than their wooden predecessors. You are guaranteed to be close to the action at Fenway but you'll always be closer to the fans sitting next to you!

Tags: group travel, stadium tours, Boston, Yawkey Way, ballpark tours, Fenway Park, group tours